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General News of Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Source: The Enquirer Newspaper

Bawumia dodged national service

; sneaked abroad after studies

After benefiting from free secondary education at the tax payers expense, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, the running mate of Nana Akufo-Addo, unlike thousands of Ghanaian youth who have taken postings to remote villages to serve their nation, shortchanged the nation by refusing to do National Service, as mandated by the law.

After he educated himself with taxpayer’s money, Dr Bawumia sneaked abroad and, upon his return in 2000, evaded National Service and conveniently picked up employment with the Bank of Ghana, where he again earned his salary from tax revenue.

According to the National Service Act (Act 3, Clause 4 “Where a person studies or continue his studies outside Ghana, he shall be liable to do his National Service on his return to Ghana after such studies or education.”

But Dr Bawumia violated this legal requirement upon his return from further studies after he had enjoyed free secondary education and went to work at the Bank of Ghana as a senior economist.

Section 7 of the National Service Act also stipulates that “Any person who has not commenced and completed his period of National Service shall not; (a) obtain employment outside the scheme or be employed by any other person outside the scheme, or c) be engaged in any employment outside the scheme whether self-employment or other.”

The law also stipulates that “Any person who (a) Contravenes any of the provisions of Section 7 of this Act (b) Refuses to notify the Board of the completion by any person of any course of study as required under the Section 9 of this Act or fails without reasonable cause (proof of which shall be on him) to give such notice or (c) Provides any information under this Act which he knows to be false or has no reason to believe to be true; or (d) Refuses or fails without reasonable cause of which shall be on him) to comply with any direction given by the board under subsection 1) of Section 1 or Section 26 of this Act “Shall be guilty of an offence and shall, on summary conviction, be liable to a fine not exceeding five thousand Cedis or a term of imprisonment not exceeding five years or both, and in the case of a continuing offence, an additional fine not exceeding one hundred cedis in respect of each day on which the offence continues.”

The NPP Presidential candidate Nana Akufo-Addo has also never done any National Service for his country, albeit excusable.

When the near septuagenarian candidate completed the University of Ghana 41 years ago, (1971) the National Service Act had not been promulgated.

The NDC Presidential candidate, John Mahama, who studied for a Bachelor of Arts (History) from the University of Ghana, was posted to the Ghana Education Service in Tamale and did his National Service between 1981 and 1982.

Paa Kwesi Amissah-Arthur, his running mate, who also studied Economics at the University of Ghana, also did his National Service between 1974 and 1975 and did his National Service at Legon with ISSER.