Politics of Thursday, 11 October 2018
There have been some concerns raised about the alleged 21 member delegation of the Vice President to the 2017 UNCTAD in Geneva. However, government sources indicate that in line with protocol arrangements for the office of the Vice President the actual 16 member delegation was not out of place.
The number rather falls in line with the conventional arrangements and even less than previous regimes.
A statement released and intercepted by PEACEFMONLINE.COM indicated that the attention of government has been drawn to a list of participants for the 2017 UNCTAD conference held in Geneva. The government appreciates the concerns raised over the size of Ghana’s entourage.
However, the following is the background and the facts:
The Vice-President, Dr. Mahamadu Bawumia, attended the meeting as the only one in his capacity invited by UNCTAD as the guest of honour. The other countries did not have their Vice Presidents or heads of states invited as the special guest of hounour and therefore did not attend. The delegation from Ghana thus could be higher than all other countries because of the special security details and other members who are mandated by standard protocol to travel with the Vice President.
He was accompanied by an entourage of 16 comprising official delegates/participants and, as is standard protocol practice for any Vice-President, by ancillary or support staff. These include security detail, media, administrative and a protocol officer.
The ancillary members of the entourage were not delegates or participants at the meeting and, admittedly, ought not have been listed as such.
Three of the listed participants did not travel with Dr. Bawumia because they are officers of the Ghana Embassy in Switzerland and resident in Geneva who joined the meeting.
Additionally, two others, Dr. Gideon Boako (Economic Advisor/Spokesperson) and Prof. Joe Amoako-Tuffour (Secretary to the Economic Management Team), who were in Switzerland on a separate two-week assignment at the Quantum Global Research Lab in Zurich, joined the team for the UNCTAD meeting.
Other countries did not participate at the Vice Presidential level because they were not invited to do so and therefore had smaller delegations. In addition, they did not include their support or ancillary staff where they had any.
Government is fully conscious of and alert to the justified demands of citizens to maintain reasonable administrative costs.