General News of Monday, 30 December 2013
Former President Jerry John Rawlings has called for a cabinet reshuffle to weed out non performing government appointees.
This, in his estimation, will not only help President John Mahama to fight corruption, but also give competent people the opportunity to help turn the wheel of fortune clockwise.
The National Democratic Congress (NDC) founder made the call at the 26th Anniversary of the annual Samanpiid festival celebrated by Kusasis in the Kusaug traditional area in the Upper East region.
According to Mr. Rawlings, some of the government appointees lacked the technical know-how to administer their sectors, hence the dwindling nature of the economy.
He warned that any further delays in fixing the ailing economy could jeopardize the NDC’s electoral fortunes in 2016.
He thus re-echoed the urgent need to overhaul the government machinery to deliver in line with the better Ghana agenda.
“I could not resist telling the President that some of his appointees are not just correct and good enough: some are the best and some are okay, but I think it is important he makes better selection next time when he wants to do something about his government.”
He insisted, “When you have people who are not good enough, your government looks vulnerable, your government becomes vulnerable; but if you have tough good people who will stand by the truth and fight corruption boldly, your government will not look vulnerable.”
He lambasted some Ghanaians for over glorifying corruption in all sectors of the economy thereby worsening the plight of the suffering masses.
Mr. Rawlings also officially announced his opposition to the upward adjustment in utility tariffs which takes effect from January 2014.
He complained that Ghanaians will be overburdened with the higher tariffs if implemented as announced by the Public Utility Regulatory Commission (PURC).
“When the President was going away, he made it known that he was going on a holiday and he left behind him higher electricity and water bills meanwhile he is gone and we have to live with the pain.”
He reiterated the need for President Mahama to reinvestigate the 2002 Bawku killings and that of the late overlord of Dagbon, Yaa-Naa Yakubu Andani II, as well as the death of the late Northern regional Chairman of the Convention Peoples Party (CPP) Alhaji Issah Mobila.
He said President Mahama risked losing his northern pride if he fails to find justice for some of the aggrieved people in Dagbon, Bawku and other conflict prone areas in the north where wanton killings and destruction of properties have taken place in the past.
He nonetheless admonished opinion leaders from both sides of the chieftaincy divide in Bawku to lead the crusade for unity and reconciliation.
The Upper East regional Minister, Alhaji Lumuna Mohammed Muniru, admonished residents of Bawku to zealously safeguard the relative peace they have enjoyed so far.
He reassured residents of Bawku that President Mahama will not renege his pledge to develop the area to regain its lost glory as once vibrant economic hub of Ghana.
The Zug-Raan Bawku Naaba, Asigri Abugrago Azorka II in a speech read on his behalf commended the security agencies for being onto of their job.
“They are more proactive, impartial and efficient in dealing with outbreaks of banditry and vandalism than in the past.”
Naaba Azorka II called for reactivation of the defunct inter-ethnic peace committee that was leading the Bawku peace processes.
The 2013 Samanpiid festival, which as usual was meant to thank God for a bumper harvest, was under the theme, “Sustaining the peace and cultural reforms in Kusaug.”
Due to high security alert in Bawku Township and the comportment of the celebrants, nothing untoward happened after the event.
There was a display of rich cultural entertainment interspersed with exchange of good-natured remarks from the celebrants.