The National Democratic Congress (NDC) has directed its Minority members in Parliament to reject the new ministers appointed by President Akufo-Addo.
According to the party, this is to help push for the reduction in the size of the current government. It stated that, the party together with other civil society organizations have on numerous occasions expressed concern over government’s size.
“The leadership of the NDC, has, against this backdrop, directed the Minority caucus in Parliament not to approve any of the new ministerial nominees and to further push for a reduction in the size of government with a view to reducing the needless drain on scarce public resources. In this moment of haircuts, the most important thing the government can do is to do a ‘governmental haircut’. Our directive to the Minority in Parliament, we believe strongly aligns with the genuine sentiments of most Ghanaians. Enough is enough.”National Democratic Congress
The NDC iterated that it has long expressed concern over the “very large size of the current government” and shares the views of most Ghanaians that it must be reduced bearing in mind the current massive economic mess the country has been plunged into by the Akufo-Addo/Bawumia government.
The party explained that it has also appealed to the government and President Akufo-Addo on numerous occasions to cut down on the number of appointees, however, the President has remained adamant.
Demand for downsizing of government
The National Democratic Congress (NDC) expressed that the option available to the party to attempt to compel the President to cut down the size of its government is to direct members of the party in Parliament to reject the nominees. It noted that the President does not appreciate the extent of the economic crisis the country is facing by keeping a large size of government.
The call for downsizing of governmental appointees followed President Akufo-Addo’s changes to his government on February 7. He appointed new persons while other ministers have been reshuffled to other ministries. These ministers are expected to appear before Parliament on Monday, February 20, for vetting.
Prior to this, the National Communications Officer of the NDC, Sammy Gyamfi, revealed that the actions of President Akufo-Addo meant he did not respect the suffering of Ghanaians. He stated that any responsible leader would have downsized government considering the hardship the country is facing.
Mr Gyamfi stated that the “so-called reshuffle” by government once again highlighted the “insensitivity and the intransigence” of the Akufo-Addo/Bawumia. He explained that the economy has been so mismanaged that it is in bankruptcy such that it cannot even service its debt, compelling creditors to accept crude haircuts on coupon rates they are entitled.
A Political Science Lecturer at the University of Ghana, Professor Ransford Gyampo, equally described President Akufo-Addo’s recent appointments as no ministerial reshuffle at all.
He noted that the exercise mainly filled vacancies in government where there have been resignations, complemented with token movements that really do not carry any weight.
In a similar vein, the Ghana Pentecostal and Charismatic Council (GPCC), requested President Akufo-Addo to as a matter of urgency downsize his government machinery. The Council reckoned that this will help build confidence in President Akufo-Addo’s commitment to solving the country’s economic problems.
It stated that this move will demonstrate to Ghanaians that the president means his call for burden sharing and that it was not a political gimmick.
The GPCC further requested the government to ensure that the controversial Domestic Debt Exchange Programme does not destroy the financial sector.
Also, the Center for Democratic Development (CDD) Ghana, made similar pleas to the President in the past to downsize his government.