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Opinions of Saturday, 25 June 2016

Columnist: Asamoah-Siaw, Kofi

President Mahama is unrepentant!

The President, Mr. John Dramani Mahama, has attempted to respond to allegations of bribe taking by accepting the Ford Expedition from his Burkinabe contractor friend. The president has said, “I don’t use Ford, I don’t like American cars. I use Japanese cars. Toyota is my car.” He also said yesterday that "If you believe I have involved myself in corruption, you have the constitutional means to do whatever you want to do."

We believe that the president’s comment is a blow to the fight against corruption. He adopted his usual attitude of passing of the buck in matters that needed his direct intervention. His Excellency has demonstrated a lack of commitment to the principle of accepting responsibility for his own actions and that of his government. President Mahama has no remorse and is unrepentant.

We believe that the president is emboldened by the absence of strong state institutions with the capacity and willingness to deal with infractions occasioned by members of the executive. In this instance, the parliament of Ghana or some members of parliament are refusing to undertake their constitutional duty to initiate or support the call for impeachment proceedings against the president for gross misconduct and a violation of article 284. The parliament of Ghana is empowered under article 69 of the constitution to initiate impeachment proceedings against the president.
We expect members of parliament to live up to their responsibilities and establish timeless principles in our governance processes. The PPP will organize a demonstration to parliament house if the impeachment process is not activated shortly.
On his re-election campaign, the president said that, "I am convinced that by the grace of the Almighty God, the people have seen the work we have done, and given the opportunity we shall do even more than that.”
We wish to remind His Excellency, President Mahama that Ghanaians will not be deceived by the play to religion or by the use of the name of God and vote for another four years of joblessness, dumsor, high utility tariffs, poverty and harsh economic conditions.

The bible says in Exodus 20:7, “You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, for the LORD will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain.” We know the people will vote to elect our leaders. The God as we know him; as Muslims and Christians, does not endorse bribery and cheating in elections by using state funds to execute a presidential campaign.
The PPP is committed to pursue a change agenda that will allow the strict separation of powers and remove the executive arm from parliament. We believe such a measure will engender accountability to the people of Ghana by the president and his/her ministers through their elected representatives. We urge Ghanaians to support the PPP with their votes in the 2016 elections to make this reform a reality.

Kofi Asamoah-Siaw
Policy Advisor