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General News of Saturday, 31 March 2018

Source: Class FM

‘Mills erred in changing name of Jubilee House to Flagstaff House’ - Prof. Asare

The late Professor John Evans Atta Mills made a mistake by changing the name of the Jubilee House to Flagstaff House when the National Democratic Congress (NDC) took over the reins of the country after the 2008 elections, Professor Kwaku Asare, a United States-based Ghanaian law professor, has said.

The Jubilee House was commissioned by former President John Agyekum Kufuor in 2008 to serve as the seat of government and official residence of the President of Ghana.

However, the edifice was renamed Flagstaff House after Professor Mills won the 2008 polls to become the president of Ghana.

He also refused to operate from that edifice and chose to work from the Osu Castle. But his successor, John Dramani Mahama decided to operate from the Flagstaff House.

The edifice has again been renamed Jubilee House on the day President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo celebrated his 74th birthday – Thursday, 29 March 2018.

Commenting on this development on his Facebook page, Prof Asare said: “I continue to think that it was unnecessary and a mistake for the Mills government to change Jubilee House to Flagstaff House.

“To be sure, Flagstaff House, a colonial military quarters, was used by the first President but the edifice put up under President Kuffour is more expansive than the quarters and he earned the right to name it. I also think naming it Jubilee House, to commemorate Ghana@50 was apt, neutral, laudable and apolitical.

“While I agree that naming will not give us bread and butter, I disagree with those who think it is an unimportant issue. We must sort out these things and correct the record for our posterity. I think the compromise to call the original building, that housed the First President, Flagstaff Quarters (not Flagstaff House) is opposite. It's a grand compromise that will allow the modern edifice to be properly named while still preserving the colonial relic.

“Finally, I call on Parliament to enact a law to give effect to the name, provide for the maintenance of the JH, and to bind all future Presidents to move there on January 7 or where leaving office to vacate same by January 6.”

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