Politics of Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Source: Daily Graphic

Samia Nkrumah: I will return any increase in my salary

The National Chairperson of the Convention People Party (CPP), Ms Samia Nkrumah, says she will return to government chest any increase in her salary as a Member of Parliament (MP) if the salary hits her account.

Ms Nkrumah, who is the MP for Jomoro, said she was against salary increases for MPs at a time when the average salary in Ghana was “just a few hundreds”.

The new salary for MPs was said to have been recommended by the Prof. Ewura Ama Addy Committee which was set up by President J.E. A Mills to review the salaries and emoluments of all article 71 office holders.

Imani Ghana, a governance think tank, in a statement released recently, said information available to it pointed to the fact that each MP would earn GHC 7, 200 per month.

The Parliamentary Service has not declined this. Speaking in a telephone interview to clarify her position on the new emoluments for MPs at an earlier press conference in Accra yesterday, Ms Nkrumah said she was not the only MP who was against the increment, pointing out that “those of us who are against it will return it”.

“I declared this position a year ago,” she said, adding that she would need some time to understand the process and ascertain when the payment would be made.

The press conference was organised to offer a platform to the recently named running mate to the CPP flag bearer, Dr. Abu Sakara, Ms Cherita Sarpong, to address the media and state her vision for the CPP and the country.

Present were many CPP bigwigs, including Prof. Agyeman Badu Akosa, Mrs. Elizabeth Apaloo, Susan Adu-Amankwa, Rhodaline Imoru Ayarna, Ivor Greenstreet, Kwame Gyantuah and Dr. Abu Sakara

Turning the spotlight on the CPP's plans for the country, Ms. Nkrumah said there was still hope for Ghana, with the CPP still alive, united and strong, adding that nothing would distract the party's attention from struggling to win power to re-build Ghana.

She said the party would, with precision, pursue the ideologies of the late President Nkrumah and restore a sense of hope and justice in Ghana.

Ms Sarpong said the nation's wealth should be of great concern to all decent Ghanaians. She said the CPP would embark on many social intervention programmes, such as free basic education up to the SHS level.

She said the “epidemic” situation and the appalling living conditions in Ghana were as a result of failed policies and systems that did not put in place social interventions such as the one put in place by the CPP in its manifesto.

According to her, if voted into power, the CPP would establish one-stop independent agricultural centers for the youth within walking distances in the communities and provide modern inputs for farming.

Dr. Sakara, for his part, said under the CPP, at least one strategic investment would be made in every region to establish an industry based on the natural resource that had the highest comparative advantage.

Trade policy, he said, would be aligned with the growth of domestic entrepreneurs, especially in the manufacturing sector.

He said the party would institute a “hardship allowance” for service in the rural areas.