When the deep voice of the Minster of Information, Mr. Fritz Baffour, came through the microphone at the Minister’s pressroom on Monday, mini recorders, the television cameras and notebooks were set in motion to capture the much-anticipated expose on the complicity of the flagbearer of the New Patriotic party (NPP), Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, on the subject of liabilities and judgement debts, that have become a topical issue in the country.
What was striking, however, on minds present at the event, was not only the disappointment on most faces, but the manner in which the event was officiated.
Ordinarily, it was expected that since the substantive Minster was present, he would take charge of the programme and address the press, but interestingly, he turned himself virtually into the Master of Ceremonies (MC) of the day.
He ironically introduced his two deputies to do the main presentation of the day, and also answer all questions in relation to it. “I will only come in when the need arises,” he noted.
Mr. Okudzeto Ablakwa, the ‘Jack Bauer’ at the Ministry of Information, who has gained notoriety for his involvement in almost all major judgement debts and settlement saga, was the boss of the day.
When he (Okudzeto Ablakwa) finally took charge, he went into action by stating that while the New Patriotic Party was accusing the government of being “debt collectors” and “debt engineers,” his press statement was to prove that Nana Akufo Addo “is no stranger to the payment of judgement debts.”
Enter Deputy Minster James Agyenim Boateng, who read two letters written by Nana Akufo-Addo, one dated the 18th of April, 2001 and written in his capacity as Attorney General and Minister of Justice, and another on 3rd October, 2011, as flagbearer of the NPP, recommending that the Ministry of Finance effect payment of about US$1.1 million to the Great Cape Company of Switzerland.
Mr. Okudzeto, making reference to both letters, noted that Nana Akufo Addo also recommended payment of the settlement, and “even went beyond settlement by simply agreeing with the petition from the solicitors of Great Cape, without any further negotiations or court processes.” “Akufo-Addo and his acolytes tell the Ghanaian public that judgment debts connote corruption, and that in the most unlikely event as President, he will rather use judgement debts to finance his unrealistic Free Senior High School pledge. But unknown to the Ghanaian public, as recently as only nine months ago, he had been busily advocating behind the scenes that the Great Cape Company of Switzerland be paid an additional $1.117,818.45 in what he calls Great Cape’s [legitimate claims]. “Are we to infer from Nana Akufo Addo’s action that it is possible to agree with a private company’s claim and not be acting against the state?” he queried.
Although Mr. Okudzeto confessed that Nana Addo did no wrong in the discharge of his professional duties as A-G, in respect to the two letters cited, he says he was only “applying the logic of the NPP on them.” “We are not saying Nana did any wrong…we are only asking questions,” he said.
Source: The Chronicle
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