Politics of Sunday, 15 December 2013
Former Communications Director for the New Patriotic Party (NPP) 2012 campaign, Nana Akomea, is wondering whether the Mahama led administration has been “cursed” beyond redemption.
According to him, President John Dramani Mahama’s inability to fight against corruption and uneven nature of the running of his administration is probably due to a curse.
The former Parliamentarian was speaking to the issue of disbursement of the Ghc1 million Media Development Fund (MDF) set by then President John Evans Atta Mills.
On September 9, 2011, then Vice President (and now President) John Mahama announced government’s plan to set up a Media Development Fund (MDF). He made the announcement while addressing the 16th Ghana Journalists’ Association (GJA) awards as the guest of honour.
Following the announcement, the then Finance Minister, Dr. Kwabena Duffuor, in his presentation of the 2012 budget to parliament, announced that Ghc1 million has been allocated to the fund. Since the pronouncement of the allocation of the fund and with just some days to end the year, there is no evidence of the operationalisation of the fund.
A couple of months ago, there were grapevine reports that the disbursement was stalled after disagreements between the Ministry of Information, the National Media Commission (NMC) and other media organizations over who should control the fund.
But on Thursday, Information Minister, Mahama Ayariga told Parliament the media fund was used in buying laptops for media practitioners. The news, as expected, has generated controversy, with many media practitioners denying receipt of the laptops.
The NMC and MFWA are demanding transparency in the management and disbursement of the media development fund.
Speaking to Adom FM, Nana Akomea blamed government for the hullabaloo.
“For about three years now we didn’t know the whereabouts of the monies...The excuse given was that they have used the money to buy laptops for journalists...How many journalists can confirm that? Who are those (journalists) who received the laptops?” he quizzed.
He continued; “I just don’t understand this NDC government. Is it that they (NDC) have been cursed? Because anything they attempt doing doesn’t go well for them…unquestionably everything. Not even a single thing. Just a common media fund, they cannot handle it.”