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General News of Wednesday, 12 April 2017

Source: Classfmonline.com

100 days in office: CDD commends Akufo-Addo

The Ghana Centre for Democratic Development (CDD-Ghana) has commended President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo for taking off well as President of the Republic of Ghana.

According to the think tank, there has been enough demonstration by the government to show that it has started on a good note, though there are a few hitches that could dent the image of the fledgling government if not checked.

President Akufo-Addo was sworn into office on January 7 2017 after winning the December 2016 presidential and parliamentary elections.

Giving its verdict on the government’s first 100 days in office, the CDD indicated: “We commend the teams of both the John Dramani Mahama-National Democratic Congress and that of the Akufo-Addo-NPP government for working out a relatively smooth and peaceful transfer of power. They exhibited high levels of cooperation and accommodation, notwithstanding the occasional disagreement and miscommunication.

“We commend President Akufo-Addo for the speed with which he assembled his team of ministers and deputy ministers for the take-off of the new government. We also applaud the efforts the president made to explain the rationale behind the nomination of specific individuals for the respective ministerial positions. The practice suggests the willingness of the President to subject his own logic and reasoning to broad scrutiny – a healthy development for Ghana’s nascent democracy, if sustained.

“We further commend President Akufo-Addo for giving impetus to the fight against corruption by allocating a substantial GHS 1.2 million to the Commission on Human Rights and Administration Justice (CHRAJ) to implement activities under the National Anti-Corruption Action Plan (NACAP). We commend the President for the declaration to put an indefinite freeze on the purchase of new vehicles and completely terminate the standing policy that allowed government appointees to purchase their official vehicles. CDD Ghana deems these decisions as important symbolic steps towards promoting good public financial management. In respect of the latter policy, the Centre recommends that the Akufo-Addo/NPP government pass a comprehensive law on the disposal of all public assets to provide a long-term guideline for the disposal of public assets.

“However, a number of developments in the first 100 days of the Akufo-Addo/NPP administration give us a cause for dismay. First, the many instance of NPP-affiliated vigilante groups, forceful takeover of state assets and public facilities, and the unlawful seizure of vehicles from members of the previous administration put a dent on the hitherto smooth transition process.

“CDD Ghana feels badly disappointed by President Akufo-Addo’s decision to appoint 110 ministers. It flies in the face of the President’s own declared commitment to protect the public purse as well as its long-standing good governance advocates campaign for meaningful reduction in the size of government and resultant government spending.”