General News of Tuesday, 18 September 2018
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has been advised to weigh the option of trimming down his elephant-size government if indeed he is determined to protect the national purse as espoused during his investiture.
The country with a population of about 28 million has about 112 Ministers and Deputies a number that has been tagged as ‘elephant-size’ by leading members of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) and various civil society groups.
Broadcaster and actor, Mikki Osei Berko, popularly known in showbiz circles as Master Richard has waded into the debate calling on the President to do something about the swelling numbers of his appointees.
Comparing the country’s ministers to Japan, China, Britain and Nigeria he described the bloated number as outrageous.
“Is it a battalion going for a war in Iraq? I really do not get the picture”, he said on his show ‘After Hours’
Tabulating the cost as in salary for 50 ministers he indicated at GH¢1,535,000,000 for ministers and their deputies.
He observed that the salaries of the other 50 could have been channelled into other projects to inure to the citizenry and appealed to the president to do the needful.
“King Promise use this opportunity to sack 50 ministers”, he disclosed.
Akufo-Addo justifies 110 Ministers
It would, however, be recalled that President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo in March last year reacted to the brouhaha that greeted the appointment of 110 ministers and deputy ministers, justifying the move as critical to the effective execution of his policies and programmes.
According to the president, the furore over the number of ministers and their deputies would mean nothing when they help in the revival of the ailing economy.
Responding to criticisms over the size of his government, the president said the current challenges of the country demand the numbers to help him bring the country back on track.
“These are the background and the circumstances that were facing my government and the people of Ghana, hence we need a new paradigm shift to solve the problems,” he stated.
In an interview with Ghana Television (GTV), President Akufo-Addo said that his administration would be justified by the end results.
“We have a problem and what is the best way? It is better to have men and women capable of serving the nation’s interests and to work to grow the economy… If I succeed, you will soon find out that the brouhaha is nothing compared to the success.