Member of Parliament for North Tongu, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, has called for a new leadership direction in the country.
Mr Ablakwa revealed that a consideration for a new leadership direction is necessary following a report released on the staffing positions occupied by some persons in the Akufo-Addo’s administration. He explained that the report which was laid in Parliament on May 25, 2022, “two months after the legal deadline, makes for interesting reading”.
“After a great deal of struggle, parliament finally got President Akufo-Addo to comply with the Presidential Office Act, 1993 (Act 463) which requires him to report annually to Parliament on the staffing position at the Office of the President.
“This country urgently needs a new leadership direction”.Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa
The North Tongu legislator indicated that pursuant to their oversight obligations as MPs, parliament shall scrutinize and debate the report in due course. That notwithstanding, Mr Ablakwa expressed that it is vital to make some “preliminary observations” since the report is now a public document.
Mr Ablakwa described as “awfully insensitive and manifestly wasteful” government’s decision to have the total staff strength increase from 934 in 2020 to 995 in 2021 out of which a massive 337 are political appointees; a decision taken in spite of the current economic crisis the country finds itself in. He explained that despite the fact that President Akufo-Addo had sought to create the impression after his Ministerial appointments that his “elephantine size of government is reducing”, it is evident that there is rather an “upward trajectory” at the Office of the President.
“Compared with 2020, we have 26 more political appointees and an overall jump from 934 to 995. Many of us had expected, at the very least, a freeze in the staffing numbers at the Presidency, bearing in mind claims by senior government officials that the public sector payroll is full.”Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa
Duplication of roles of government’s appointees
Elaborating on the complexities of the matter regarding the size of government appointees, Mr Ablakwa highlighted that there is also an “alarming duplication of roles” purportedly being performed by multitudes. This, he chided, is not only “dishonourable” but cannot be labelled as the judicious use of taxpayer’s money when Ghanaians are facing the “harshest economic conditions” in a generation.
Commenting on the number of Directors of Communications at the presidency, Mr Ablakwa disclosed that an addtional three have been included to serve in “the same position Mr. Eugene Arhin occupies”. He stated that this swarm does not include the “social media warriors and the army” at the Information Ministry.
“Per President Akufo-Addo’s list, the Ghanaian Presidency has 4 Directors of Communications, 5 Deputy Directors of Communications, 2 Communications Specialists, 3 Communication Officers, 5 Technical Communications Assistants, a Media Aide, an Assistant Media Liaison Officer, a Communications Consultant and a Presidential Advisor on Media who also has a Technical Director to the Presidential Advisor.”Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa
Expressing his disappointment, the North Tongu legislator questioned why the President has decided to “erode the gains” from his decision not to appoint Deputy Regional Ministers in his second term by creating a new category of Personal and Special Assistants for all Regional Ministers who are drawing salaries from the Presidency. He revealed that such levels of deception completely destroy the already low public confidence in the office of the President.
“It does appear the Akufo-Addo Presidency was always set up to place premium on expensive rhetoric and not concrete deliverables.”Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa
READ ALSO: UK Unveils $18bn Household aid & 25 Percent Energy Profit tax
Leave a Reply