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Opinions of Sunday, 20 May 2012

Columnist: Kwateng, J.F.

Is it Hard To Trust Mills NDC Gov’t Because of GIAL Refund Delay?

Can we trust Mills NDC Gov’t? This is what any sensible voter wants to know before voting in the next general election on 7th December 2012. All politicians (both abroad and home) make promises which they can’t keep because they are human. However, there are few basic promises that are so fundamental that they expose a person’s integrity, character and TRUST. One clear example is the promise Mills gave in respect of the Ghana International Airways Refund. As the second anniversary of the collapse of Ghana International Airways approaches there are still some passengers waiting to receive their refunds.
About a year ago communiqués were issued by the Ministry of Transport in Accra confirming that the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning, under the directive of President John Evans Atta Mills, had released GH¢1,306,077.89 for the settlement of the remaining validated claims.
Another communiqué signed by Mr Kweku Sersah-Johnson, Public Affairs Director also stated that “A directive to that effect, signed by Dr Kwabena Duffour, Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, on March 18, 2011, authorised the Controller and Accountant General to release the amount to enable the Ministry of Transport to pay validated outstanding refund to Travel and Tour Operators for onward payment of the cost of ticket to the affected passengers,”
It went further to inform Ghanaians that GH¢ 3,664,099.81 had so far been released to meet the refund of all claims validated by the Interim Management Committee set up by the Ministry of Transport to handle the exercise. It added that “All the claims of about 2,600 passengers have been met as well as payments by Government to other Airlines which were contracted to transport some of the stranded passengers to their various destinations in the wake of the end of the operations of the GIAL”.

“With this recent release…the Ministry of transport is of the hope that all outstanding validated claims would have been covered and/or catered for and that this should bring to an end all attendant agitations,” the statement said
From the foregoing, it appears that the Ministry of Transport has fully settled all Ghana International Airways claims. Far from it. The Interim Management Committee appointed by the Ministry of Transport is yet to settle the Ghana International Passengers’ final claims which I believe will include the following, to mention a few:
Miss Maysel 0208 894 2490
Miss Wendy Boakye 0208 680 0778
Miss Janet Welsh 0208 239 1907 (07500721597)
Mrs Opoku 0794 191 6616
Mrs Twum Barimah 0208 684 8684

While Mills NDC Government is fretting about how to market herself to be re-elected, the serious constitutional question is not how we elect our governments but how to stop them from moving away from fundamental promises.

J F Kwateng