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General News of Saturday, 29 May 2021

Source: www.ghanaweb.com

If Ghana was your private company, would you have behaved this way? – Ablakwa descends on Akufo-Addo again

Member of Parliament for North Tongu, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa Member of Parliament for North Tongu, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa

• Okudzeto Ablakwa has slammed the president for his engaging in opulence

• He wondered why the president will abandon the presidential jet and rent a private one

• His claims were however rejected Hopeson Adorye of the NPP

Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, the Member of Parliament for North Tongu has accused President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo of engaging in profligacy while expecting Ghanaians to spend modestly and help the economy recover.

As part of efforts to wheel the country’s economy out of the shackles of coronavirus and its effect, the government has introduced some new taxes, urging Ghanaians to help it rebuild the economy.

But it appears that while the populace is being urged to adopt austere measures, the leadership of the country is spending on luxurious things in the wisdom of Okudzeto Ablakwa.

The premise of his position is the renting of a $15,000 per hour plane for nine-day foreign travel by President Akufo-Addo.

In an interview with Okay FM, Okudzeto quizzed President Akufo-Addo if he would have embarked on such profligacy if Ghana was a private company he owed.

Referencing Akufo-Addo’s promise to ‘protect the public purse’, Ablakwa wondered if hiring a luxurious aeroplane is part of the cost-cutting measures.

“If Ghana was your private company and you’ve bought a private jet, would you do that? Would you abandon the jet and use a private jet? Is it really necessary for you to do that? You’ve chartered the most expensive jet. He could have flown commercial. The company had a fleet of jets that we could have spent less than what we spent but we decided to go for top of the range. This is to make money and show that they are in a league of their own that’s why they created this plane.

“Even the company itself says. Why go for the highest at the expense of the taxpayer when going for debt forgiveness? All the countries we are approaching don’t do this. You dare not leave the presidential jet and go for a luxury aircraft to be chilling in the airspace. This is wrong and unconscionable. Someone who promised to protect the public purse is that you protecting the public purse.”

But a member of the governing New Patriotic Party has proffered the reason why the president ditched the presidential aircraft for a private jet.

“The claim that President Akufo-Addo has decided not to use the presidential jet is not true. It is not President Akufo-Addo’s decision. In fact, what has been recommended since 2018 October where they almost had a crash in America…

The reports that came out from the experts in the military and so on was that they shouldn’t use that jet for long-distance travel and for more than 5 hours and ordered that either the president charters or we buy a new aircraft,” Nana Akomea said.

He noted, "He (President Akufo-Addo) uses the jet in Ghana for his local travel and his West African travels."

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