Kufuor doesn’t have a quarter of Mahama’s anti-corruption commitment – Presidential staffer


A presidential staffer James Agyenim Boateng believes Ghana would have been a far better place if former President Kufuor had a quarter of the current President’s commitment to fighting corruption.

In a comment sure to stoke controversy, the presidential staffer noted “for me, the President [John Mahama] has acted in a manner if he had had Kufuor acting just a quarter of that we would not have been where we are”.

He was speaking on Joy FM and Multi TV’s Saturday political analysis programme, Newsfile.

Panelists were discussing the commencement of prosecution of a former National Coordinator of the Ghana Youth Employment and Entrepreneurial Development Agency (GYEEDA), Abuga Pele.

Abuga Pele, the National Democratic Congress (NDC)  Member of Parliament for Chiana-Paga has been charged with willfully causing financial loss to the state, misapplication of public funds and aiding and abetting crime.

His accomplice Chief Executive of Goodwill International Group (GIG), Philip Akpeena Assibit, is facing charges of defrauding by false pretence, lose of public property and willfully causing financial loss to the state.

James Agyenim Boateng, a former deputy Minister for Information and Media Relations is among many political charges praising the president for taking on one of his own men.

He says the move demonstrates President John Mahama “has the muscle to bring a closure to this matter”.

The President has been roundly criticized for his commitment to fighting corruption. Anti-corruption campaigner and former opposition MP P.C Appiah-Ofori last year condemned the president saying “as for President Mahama, he can never fight corruption. He doesn’t have the guts to fight it. He only wants to satisfy his party (NDC) members”.

Government has also been hit by three anti-corruption demonstrations organised by  the Progressive Peoples Party (PPP).

Many also see the GYEEDA scandal as a test case of his commitment.

Government has so far cancelled contracts of service providers under GYEEDA and the president has instructed the Attorney General and Minister of Justice as well as the Finance Minister to retrieve all monies wrongfully paid to individuals and companies through contracts with the agency, the Savanna Accelerated Development Agency (SADA) and the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA).

The impressed political appointee hailed Mahama noting the president is “indeed a true anti-corruption campaigner” unlike President Kufuor.

James says Kufuor preferred to deal with corruption discretely to save his government from “collapse” and public ridicule.

This he says, was the purpose of the Office of Accountability [OA] within the Presidency set up by President Kufuor in 2003.

“If they [OA]  found something wrong they call you into an inner room and they ask you why did you do that, don’t do that again”, Agyenim Boateng said.

But opposing panelist and member of the opposition New Patriotic Party Egbert Faibille Jnr does not believe the President deserves praises for fighting corruption at GYEEDA.

He said the president in the face of the evidence can do nothing but to act the way he has done in prosecuting officials involved in the scandal.

Former Communications Director of the NPP Nana Akomea also says the president has had to be forced by public anger and agitations only for him to take “a small step”. Story by Ghana|Myjoyonline.com|Edwin Appiah|edwin.appiah@myjoyonline.com

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