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Opinions of Friday, 8 June 2018

Columnist: Kwaku Badu

A braggart caught by his own tongue, Akufo-Addo is incorruptible as the late Mills

It would only take an obdurate agnostic or a disputatious character to contend that the embattled President of the Ghana Football Association, Mr Akwasi Nyantakyi did not brag to high heavens when he was put on the spot by the Anas’s investigative team.

Indeed, it does not take superior power of the mind or transcendental powers to appreciate that Mr Nyantakyi was not forthright in his asseverations.

Given the circumstances surrounding Nyantakyi’s seemingly pompous statement, it would be unfair and boundlessly unconscionable for anybody to imply that President Akufo-Addo is engaging in corrupt practices. How bizarre?

I am pretty sure that by now Mr Nyantakyi has deeply regretted for indulging in a playground impishness that has the potential to tarnish the hard earned image of the incorruptible President Akufo-Addo.

In fact, President Akufo-Addo’s actions and inactions towards the fight against corruption cannot be underestimated. How could anyone aim a finger at a man who has created the Office of the Special Prosecutor with the view to combating the canker of corruption?

How would you accuse someone who can even report his own right-hand men to the investigative body such as the Criminal Investigation Department?

Isn’t it unreasonable for anybody to suggest that a politician who can even reject the juicy trappings of a minister can be corrupt?

Candidly, the man Akufo-Addo has been in active politics for well over forty years and there hasn’t been a single corruption case against him. So, why must anybody think that the septuagenarian president will now indulge in malfeasance?

To be quite honest, it is only the mischievous and the antagonists of Akufo-Addo who would take Mr Nyantakyi’s apparent untruths seriously.

Well, some of us would be most grateful if the energetic anti-corruption crusaders, the opposition NDC operatives can revisit the STX housing deal, Brazilian aircrafts and the Armajaro scandals.

If we take a stroll down memory lane, somewhere in October 2010, the British media brought up sensational reports about how the then Vice President John Dramani Mahama, was lobbied by a British Cabinet Minister to get a reprieve for the ban imposed on Armajaro Holdings, one of the cocoa buying companies who were found guilty for smuggling the commodity out of Ghana.

Armajaro Company was banned together with a few other companies when the award winning investigative journalist, Anas Aremeyaw Anas exposed the smuggling of uncountable bags of cocoa into neighbouring Cote d’Ivoire.

Shockingly, however, the British media reported that subsequent to the meeting between the then Vice President John Dramani Mahama and the British Cabinet Minister, Armajaro Company was given a needless reprieve and then started its operations.

Indeed, I would have loved to see the anti-corruption crusaders probing into Ex-President Mahama’s dreadful handling of the STX Housing deal which was supposed to provide affordable housing units to the security agencies.

It has been alleged that even though the deal did not materialise, the then Vice President Mahama, is reported to have given us a bill in excess of $300 million.

Last but not least, I would like to lodge complaint with the NDC anti-corruption crusaders to look into the Brazilian aircraft deal.

It would be recalled that during his State of the Nation Address on 19th February 2009, the late President Mills informed the Parliament that his government was looking into the decision to acquire two executive Presidential jets.

However, the late President Mills was somehow ambivalent over the acquisition of the aircrafts and thus observed: "Ghana simply cannot afford the expenditure at this time and we certainly do not need two Presidential Jets" (thestatesmanonline.com, 16/06/2016).

Astonishingly, however, whilst the late Mills was joyfully delivering his euphonious state of the nation address in the parliament, the Vice President John Mahama, who also happened to be the chairman of the Armed Forces Council, was blissfully entertaining delegations from Brazil and busily negotiating the acquisition of five jets, including the most expensive hangar without the knowledge of the late President Mills.

Unsurprisingly, the late President Mills became suspicious of the whole deal and decided to put a committee together to review the deal, according to Mr Martin Amidu, the former Attorney General under President Mills.

I have always maintained that although I am not, and will never be an NDC apologist, I will forever vouch for the late President Mills unparalleled adherence to moral principles.

k.badu2011@gmail.com