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General News of Saturday, 7 December 2002


Should Osaafo-Maafo Resign - The People's Voice

1150 Ghanaweb visitors took part in a poll held from December 2-5

Question: Should Osafo-Maafo, Minister of Finance, resign over the IFC Loan fiasco

Yes, with all Key Negotiators28.1%
No Opinion2.1%

Unedited Comments From Some of our Visitors

No I don't agree that the finance minister should resign just because of IFC loan that did not go 'thru' it's just part of econmic/business realily. Things did not look good after all so he and his team informed the Prez to discontinue the pursuit of the loan---that's it---and that shows that they wanted something good for the nation. Congratulations, "Allan Greenspan of Ghana" It's been a good experience!
Victor A. Young (Toronto, Canada)

They just showed how incompetent they are for the job. they may be competent in a different sector but not in the economic management of our dear ghana. what a disgrace !!!!!!
paul adevor

"No Ventured No Gain". There was no sovereign guarantee and as such I personally do not see the financial loss that warants resignation. Can someone ask Bagbin and his men when they are going to bring on the players in The Gallen Gulf Stream Transaction to book. I want to know

These guys are still learning. From this, the NPP must know that it is easier to talk from the opposition bench than performing. I am NPP member but this is really bad and shameful. I think the next change must affect them but they should not resign. Are they candidates for trial, may be since their transaction involves lost of money to the state.

I strongly believe the whole team concerned with this deplorable saga should be sacked fotthwith.

Why should a minister resign from office all because he has decided not to pursue a loan? Of cource there will be some administrative costs associated with the acquisition process. But, that is just a way of doing business. Ghanaians need to wake up---tell Mr. Koomson to get a life. If he is that patriotic, he needs to concentrate his efforts on the crooks who have squandered millions of dollars in loan proceeds acquired during the previous (NDC) administration and lapped for personal gains.
K. Samuel Osei

He should bow his head down in shame. We all realised the 419 business this government is doing with the tax payers meagre resources. Sarfo Marfa, Paul acquah and the "100 years minister" JH mensah should leave us alone and concerntrate on their retirement benefit and stop wasting our time with their out of function idealogies.

His decision for no loan is better than allowing Ghana to be duped or take that loan and divert to private accounts like in the days of NDC
Baba Yaro

Why should a minsiter who is suppose to seek the interest of a whole country go in for a deal, he and his partners know is going to end up in a negative way.when will ghanaians ministers have the interest of the country. Infact l am disappoint in the minister and his doctorate degree.
David Krause

So far as I am aware, no deal gets sanctioned without the almighty Prez's thumb print. Why is he keeping stumph all of a sudden and letting the big mouth take the hack alone. No wonder the frontliners feel they can argue. May God guide Ghanaians to find a true leader this one and his mates have really let their greed and hunger get the better of them!
Concerned Citizen

i think the minister for finance does not deserve this lashes Ghanaians are lashing out to him.I think the minister should rather raise his head up for a job well done,why because this are people who have the interest of the nation at heart,they were trying to secure a loan that could have help in the development of our nation.This is not the first time a government has failed to secure a loan and that does not mean that the government should resign,no that is not a fact.We are just trying to lose the whole scenario here,this people went out to find source so that some development programes can go on,not for me alone but the entire nation,had they succeded then they will have being complemented for a job well done( that is if there are people who really have the interest of the nation at heart)but they failed so they should resign that is not sensible.
Well i know so many people from the opposition especially will try to use this to gain some political points but i think this is just going to be a cheap political point because Ghanaians know and understand why we needed that money and if it has failed i think they undersatnd too.There is no way they cancompare this to that of the case of Victor Selormey and the other cases that has put them in jail. Those people really did cause financial lost to the state,and they were real corrupt leaders so i think it serve them right to be put behind bars.I think is time Ghanaians release is time we learn to move forward and stop blaming people with no apparant reason. In my own humble opinion the minister must not resign.
nana hene

He should resign because he defended a loan which was not real and did not exist although the minority in parliament of ghana and senior journalists like Kofi Coomson of the ghanaian chronicle newspaper warned the minister about the non existence of the IFC loan.
Joseph Coomson

I do not think he had any criminal intent in the transaction. If anyone can bring any criminal charge against him that person should do so
George Donkor

oh Ghana, sometimes i sit and get worried about the behaviour of some Ghanaians, for me the fact that you are not with the Gov. in power does not mean anything he does is wrong. My comment about about this IFC Loan is, I dont see the reason why the Finance minister should resign, the fact that he was not given the loan does not mean that is the end of Ghana.He has done his part.
Mr Maafo, i wish u all the best.
Stanley Nana Anderson

No. This will require further, investigation as to whether or not he discharged his due properly. No matter how intelligent one came be there is always opportunity to for other to deceive. In this IFC case, I see that extra caution was exercised in order to halt any further negociations. In this wise Osaafo Marfo is deemed the right to study the deal to accept or reject. And this is what he did.
Bright Siaw Afriyie

Although he had done a poor job on investgating the IFC whether it was capable of delivering on its promise before asking the paliament to approve the loan, Mr. Osafo-Maafo should not resign because he did not contract the loan. Had he contracted it and Ghana paid an upfront lending fees to the IFC, then he should resign. While media are critising his poor handling of the loan in the beginning, they should commend him for not contracting the loan when he and his team discovered the IFC was unable to deliver on its promise. Unlike the Rawlings administration, the Kuffour administration has been very transparent in its loan contracting. Media had had access to the loan documents, and they asked critical questions. And they were proper. All administrators, managers, officals etc, they should take a cue from that. With they do that, they will do better job for their country.
Joseph Asante

It is very sad that we always let our political affiliations override our sentiments and judgements. If people entrusted with the country's economy could make such a grievious blunder, why should we hold brief for them. If we had been bold to to disagree to some of the goings during the previous regime, I believe we wouldn't have grumbled much about situation back home now. We should be bold to give praises when due and should be able to lash when the need be. But if we keep on muting over seemingly unacceptable transactions by the Goverment and voice out the necessary punishment, we better forget about our beloved country ever getting in lane for development. We should not let the leadership change hands before we go to town with usual slogan "agya aban yi adi oman no awu"
Nana Ampadu

What the Honourable member from Awisa has displayed is the one quality that's lacking in many an African politician: the integrity to say sorry, we were wrong. O! that we had that kind of a person in the immediate past dispensation. What an oasis of trust, stability, economic development and social advancement Ghana would have been in!
Calus Von Brazi

The resignation of a minister is base on his incompetence or being corrupt. Mr. Osafo Marfo is working effectively as a finance Minister doing everything including loans negotiations. During his term of office Ghana has been link with international finance institutions and been receiving grants and through HIPIC we have been receiving loans and debt cancellations. What else do we need from this man?Here is a man who has been making everything clear and plain to the people.This and that is what we are doing. You dont want this man then who else? Dr. Botwey the longest serving Finance Minister did not declare what P/NDC gov't plan to do during his 13 years of admistration followed by his predesessor Mr. Pepprah now look at what is going during their terms of office.( corruption and stealling.$2.5bn loan scandal before the fast Track High Cout) Fellow Ghanaians let's be patients and see what Mr. Marfo and his team will be doing for us rather than to listern to the Minority in parliament are saying.Infact, the withdrawal of this loan negotiation was also base on the peoples voice. When it was advertise for the people's contribution we voted no to its negotiations so if at the end of the day it has been withdrawn,we shouldn't call for the sector minister's resignation because that is what we ask for.
mercy Cudjoe

The Finance Minister and the key negotiators did not do their home work before rushing for this huge loan. It rather gives the impression that the 'crook' politicians are back in business. I hope not, because this time around the media will be monitoring the corrupt politicians. GOD BLESS GHANA !
Ato Kwamena, Bronx, NY

We wanted to get a loan and unfortunately it fell through. What is the wrongdoing about that. Let us think well. If the loan had been successful would anyone call the so-called opposition forces to resign their post. This is ridiculous indeed. When the debate about the loan was ongoing, The Atta Mills,who will never be president ,was all silent with no contribution. Now he comes out to call for the resign of the finance minister and others. I tell you Atta Mills is the joke of the twenty first century. He is the guy who does not have his own ideas, he just follows the wind and the crowd. I am sorry for such people like Atta Mills. The Only Thing he needs will be another Swedru Declaration to the presidency. Should Osafo Maafo resign and give the position to Victor Selomey to be deputised by Dan Abodakpi and Owusu Boadu of Texas USA ?. God forbid.
Richardak Omeah

I personally don't think the resignation of the Finance Misnister alone will help anything but somebody has to be disciplined for this sham. It is amazing how their greed did not allow them to listen to all the pieces of advice that they were being given from individuals and organizations. Their all knowing attitude will cause Ghana dearly one day. So far apart from sending Ghana to HIPC, the NPP government has done nothing apart from persecuting Rawlings and his colleques. It a disappointment and a shame.
Kwame Yeboah

I believe there are more important lessons to be learnt from this adventure. We should concentrate on those things that would push this country forward other than those that tend to destroy individuals. There has not been any proof or any indication of malice on the part of the minister and the rest of the negotiators, and those calling for their heads are just being mischievous.
kwaku osei

Osafo-Maafo is not qualified as a Finance Minister if he could be con by some few people into this IFC agreement. The whole world will start thinking of the type of leadership we have in Ghana. The current gov't doesn't want to share the rich experience the minority has, hence its failure.
Musah Sango

It simply shows two reasonings:
1) They are very naive or ignorant about world politics or
2) Their intentions were to steal from the government and this include Professors Ayensu and Ofosu-Armah

John K. Davis

Some of us are so infantile and tunnel-visioned in our perspectives on the broad issues. The man (OM) has asked the legitimate question to those who are demanding his resignation: tell him what he did wrong in attempting to source a loan (for the development of Ghana's infrastructure) to justify your demand on him to resign. To say that his ATTEMPT to lead Ghana to source a loan (which he after careful negotiation decided will not serve the national interest in the long run) was wrong because people labelled it a SCAM (do we really know what a SCAM is?) is at best vicious.
People are talking about the COST of the failed transactions as if no cost need not be incurred in pursuing a loan. Where on earth does one get a COST-FREE loan (successful or failed)? If it were successful would you have asked for the COST?
And 'transparency', 'accountablility'? We should get real. If the matter were not transparently done it would not even have been sent for approval in the Cabinet and in Parliament. Nor would the matter have become open to public discussion at all. Or do you mean you should have been told dito about the whole, stage by state, word for word? Above all, the man and his team have come out forthright to tell all the world about why it was unsuccessful - that transparency, that is accountability.
John Kwadwo Osei-

The Finance Minister, the Senior Minister and the Bank of Ghana should resign for draging the whole nation into this mess. Did they know what they were doing? Didn't the minority warned them but they paid no heed to their warnings. They should prepare to appear before the FTC by the next government for causing financial lost to the state.

This is not a question to ask the public, the man has disapointed the nation and the house of the government, or the President. Democracy rule should not count on one person, a lot of folks out there with the same qualifications. I would be glad to hear him saying I am resigning than to let people vote him out. This is where we can see the intergrity.
Josep N. Nartey

I don't see any reason why anyone should resign. If my dad sends me out to go borrow money (loan) from his friend, he pays for my food and "lorry fare". I get there and found out that the deal was a fraud and or will not benefit my family with all the terms/conditions my dad's friend put on the loan. I intern reject the loan and return home. Should my dad disown me for refusing the loan because he paid for my food and "lorry fare" ? That is all part of doing business.
Ghanaians should be thanking the Ministers, BOG Governor and the government for recognizing that the terms/conditions, and the after effects of the loan will not help Ghana after all. We need to empower our Ministers and MPs to make such bold decisions.

Why must he resign? He only sought to secure much-needed loan for the country. What did Ghana lose as a reult of his actions? I am yet to hear cogent reasons why he should resign. All they know is calling on the Edumadzes, Hamidus, Hackman Owusu-Agyemangs, Jake Obetsebis, Kwamena Bartels, Malik Alhassans, Major Sulemanas, Grace Colemans. J.H. Mensahs, Paul Acquahs et al to resign. Yet, nobody has been able to impute wrong doing of the magnitudes we have come to know on their part. Hear Atta-Mills calling on others to resign. Immorality at its peak.
Mark Assibey-Yeboah

Anybody who still believes Safo Mafo, Paul Acquah, and J. H. Mensah should not resign from their position have to get their head examined. This is a simple case of negligence, negligence and maybe even fraud on the part othis three.
Mammah Nelson

Monies used in the negotiations is a financial loss to the state. After they fail to secure the loan instead of giving the through reasons for their inability to get the loan, they kept on peddling lies and blaming other people.

The minister has not done anything wrong that he should resign because it is not a crime to to apply for a loan for your country if it fails. Infact lamm suprised that a person like Atta Mills should called for the resgnation of the minister. What constitute resignation is what fraud. When Rawlings used his hands on his vice where was Attah Mills?
Emmanuel Ameyaw

The double face man JH Mensah and his cronies have abused their credibility and as far as i'm concerned, their credibility is zero.They have lied to ghanaians as such they cannot be trusted. Hence they have get out.

That Ghana needs an enormous capital injection into its infrastructural development, and that the image of the government and for that matter the nation has been slightly dented, for the pursuit of the IFC loan, in my opinion, are two undeniable facts. The question then is should this warrant the resignation of the Finance Minister and his compatriots in the IFC Loan contract? To determine this, one has to consider the pros and cons. Let me take the cons first.
1. A slight dent on the image of Ghana
2. Loss of small amount of money on air tickets, per diem and hotel bills as has been bandied about by many critics.
3. Loss of useful manhours of high ranking officials for the number of days spent on negotiating and contracting the loan.
On the positive side, the government players have been able to subjugate their pride and have honourably withdrawn from the loan on fianally realizing that it was no longer worth pursuing. To me this is much more important for a nation whose leadership has been with fraught with pride and arrogance for decades. Another positive impact is the challenge thrown to the donor community. Ghana's frantic pursuit of the loan has opened an important window for the IMF and the World Bank on understanding the plight of HIP countries in financing their infrastructure needs. The importance of socio-economic infrastructure to the development of an economy cannot be overemphasized. It is for this reason that countries that have opted for HIPC, in order to reduce their debt burden, cannot abandon their infrastructure development for the period they remain HIPC. This has, indeed thrown a big challenge to the donor agencies to rethink the conceptual framework of the HIPC initiative with the view to eventually realigning the Initiative with the infrastructural needs of the member countries. When this is done not only Ghana, but all other other member countries of HIPC will be the beneficiaries. This challenge partly accounts for the recent visit of the boss of International Financial Corporations (IFC - the World Bank,s affiliate) to Ghana.
It is a positive gain that is emerging from the pursuit of the "IFC Loan" and the enormity of its long term effect will more than offset any short term negative impact the loan must have had on the country. Thus, although the government must have failed in securing the loan, its pursuit has not been in vain. It has succeeded in making an indelibe mark on the donor community which is very important in our economic development drive as a nation.
Kwame Amo

I believe they must resign honorably because given the sort of noise they make, one would expert them to know better. After all they claim the're experienced. Huh! Some experience! For the Governor of Bank of Ghana to politicize that office is unheard of. Are we playing politics with our central bank? Oh God help us! As for J.H Mensah (alias senoir minister: as if we were in some school) the earlier he is sent home, the better for us all. He never speaks any sense expected of a man of his age and calibre. I think at his age, he should be negotiating a visa with his maker rather than being in government and comitting blunders. My fear is for the president. Indications are that they will fail him. These people are greedy. They went for the loan because of their personal gains. Now the whole Ghana has been disgraced. God help us.

His action doesn't warrant a resignation because he didn't cause any financial loos to the Republic. At least he had the gust to the parliament where as the previous government contracted loans, approved and never reached the shores of Ghana. NDC acted as agent on their onbehalf to sign loans for the government. Leave Osafo alone he is doing a fine job.
Kwame Agyeman

the manner with which the finance minister and other negotiating member pursued the loan agreement prove to me that they all lack qualifications and competence it their field. They negotiated to loan not with spirit of the nation in mind but their party - NPP in mind. The candour with which they pushed through the passage of loan agreement in parliament shows that not even a high school student will answer questions in his/her class on the same issue. How come that a whole finance minister, governor of the nation's central bank, "the most high senior minister of all ministry, very top economic and financial advisors did not know that the "IFC" was a dubious institution? I cannot imagine how the most uneducated farmer somewhere in Ashanti Region will come to Kumasi to buy roofing sheets or farm equipment and enter a drug store instead of a hardware store. All those involved in the loan deal need not resign, but fired! When Rawlings said sometime ago that the Kuffour government is the most corrupt one in the history of Ghana, the government went after him. Apppiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiih!
Cobbina Kwakwa

Much as I don't like the attitude, selfishness and lack of foresight on the part of most of our present ministers, I don't think resigning over 'every issue' is right. People need to make some of these mistakes to learn and gain experience. Where need be, however, the president should show firmness in the application of his so-called ZERO TOLERANCE motto and sack unscrupulous and careless ministers.

Why should someone think that Osafo Maafo should resign? What wrong has he done? He does not need to resign over this issue unless there can be very strong issue of financial malpractice

I think he shd resign, but the question then arises, what about the 102, or so MPs, who also aloud themselves to be misled!!! That brings the number to 102++..., so is the country ready for a crises of that nature?

But common sense should tell all involved to resign as they have by all means been proven grossly incompetent to handle the financial affairs of the nation. How can a whole Minister of finance and Bank of Ghana Govenor fail in the performance of due dilligence? Kufuor wake up and stop hand-picking these dim wits for these sensitive positions. Watch it Kuffuor or it will be you next!!!
Guy Foxx

I find it very strange that this situation has occured in this dear country of ours, especially comming from reputable politicians who have for long lived in this part of the world for long.
In this part he accepts responsibility and .......... I live in Holland and not quite recentlly a whole government had to resign enblock taking responsibilty for what its soldiers did in Bosnia. I can count numerous cases. If the minister involved cannot take responsibility then only heaven knows.
Foh kwaku akposoe

Thanks for this opportunity to add my voice on this very important subject matter. It is indeed interesting and worth noting that such an innocent adventure should attract such calls for resignation. I think that the Minister should not resign over this IFC loan issue. If he does, it can lead to a more credible speculation on the minds of the public than it is now, about the causes for the Government withdrawal from the negotiation.
Agyiri Anthony

I believe we all loose something to gain something, so if they've gone to look for loan to help us and they didn't get it, should we hang them for that. I think it's absurd for anyone to ask for their resignations. We need the extra capital, if it had come we would have gained but it didn't so life goes on.

Government should be commenede for the bold decision taken to withraw the IFC loan. I believe personally, the finance minister Osafo Maafo should not resign over the IFC loan because he had made it clear to Ghanaian Government back off the loan and should be commended for that
Adam Mahfuz

Although he had done a poor job on investgating the IFC whether it was capable of delivering on its promise before asking the paliament to approve the loan, Mr. Osafo-Maafo should not resign because he did not contract the loan. Had he contracted it and Ghana paid an upfront lending fees to the IFC, then he should resign. While media are critising his poor handling of the loan in the beginning, they should commend him for not contracting the loan when he and his team discovered the IFC was unable to deliver on its promise. Unlike the Rawlings administration, the Kuffour administration has been very transparent in its loan contracting. Media had had access to the loan documents, and they asked critical questions. And they were proper. All administrators, managers, officals etc, they should take a cue from that. With they do that, they will do better job for their country.
Joseph Asante

l think the finance minister and all the key players in the IFC loan scam should resign honourably or be given a sack.When they left the shores of Ghana for the negotiations,their feeding,their lodging and any other recreational activity was paid by the Govt.Even their per diem.This is a Govt. that preaches zero tolerance and should abide by that.If on the other hand they refuse to resign,then they should pay back the monies they collected as allowances during their jouneys in and outside the country in connection with the loan.

Only a loser quits! He is a very sharp person.How many Finance ministers have ever made the public aware of procedures involved in getting a loan facility.People asking for his head sh'd thank the Gov't for educating them unlike previous administrations where individuals treated the country as theirs.
George Billa

I am sad to hear from people like Prof. Atta Mills that Osafo Marfo should resign. Prof. Atta Mills presided over the most corrupt government in the history of Ghana, but was not able to tell any of his corrupt ministers to resign. What then is his justification for asking someone who only decided not to persue a loan agreement which he feels is in the interest of Ghana to resign.
Alhassan Myson

Once the loan was not taken there is no need for him to retire. Let this get to past and concentrate on othe important matters. All those talkertives are NDC propagandas.
Kwabena Gyasi

It is about time Ghana stopped relying on foreign handouts and start thinking about increasing productivity if we ever want to advance