On October 25, 2022, some 80-plus NPP MPs led by Andy Kwame Appiah-Kubi, MP for Asante-Akim North, held a press conference to demand the sacking of Ken Ofori-Atta, Minister of Finance.
They threatened to boycott the then impending Budget if it was to be presented by Ken.
Seeing red, President Akufo-Addo, at a meeting with the aggrieved MPs, pleaded for time till Ghana concluded negotiations with IMF, pleading that “terminating the appointment …will disrupt the programme.”
On October 27, 2022, a wealthy-businessman stormed Parliament “with a fat envelope” to attempt to influence the MPs to drop their calls for Ofori-Atta’s sacking.
Andy Appiah-Kubi said the man “got disappointed when we said we cannot take anything.
It is not for the reason of money that we are making this demand.”
On December 1, 2022, the MPs repeated their call for Ken’s ouster, saying they expected the President to fulfil his part of the bargain on the deal they struck with him.
Today is September 8, 2023. Ken Ofori Atta is still Finance Minister.
As of December 2016, Ghana’s debt was GH¢122 billion.
In three years, 2019, the debt had ballooned to GH¢236 billion.
The argument by government was, and has been, that “we borrowed to improve infrastructure”.
Question is, for what did previous governments borrow?
Now to some hanging galamsey issues.
On March 19, 2021, renowned heart surgeon and former Minister of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, Professor Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng, presented a report on the activities of the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Illegal Mining (IMCIM) of which he was head.
The report, which was handed over to the Chief of Staff at the Office of the President, imputed wrongdoing on the part of some government appointees.
In mid-April, 2023, details of the report leaked in the media.
Big names were named.
On April 22, 2023 a statement from Jubilee House dismissed the claims in the ex-minister’s report as hearsay.
June 7, 2023: Professor Frimpong-Boateng was arrested by the Office of the Special Prosecutor (OSP) in connection with its inquiries into the claims by the minister.
He was granted bail in the sum of GH¢2 million.
The wheels of justice…
Now, to Alan Kyerematen’s withdrawal.
His announcement has made me a prophet.
Last Friday, against the backdrop of the shocking result for him in the August 26 New Patriotic Party (NPP) Super Delegates Conference, I wrote asking, Is it over for Alan?
One of two things might have happened in Mr Kyerematen’s world.
Either he was unaware of the findings of the Kobby Mensah-led poll conducted after the Super delegates primaries, or he was too disgusted by NPP’s handling of the assault on his North East Regional spokesperson.
Officials of the NPP in the region have downplayed the assault, dismissing it as an altercation between two people and seeking to imply that the injury to the agent’s eye was superficial.
Observers, however, are surprised.
They question how a minor injury could have necessitated an emergency flight to Accra for specialist eye care for the victim.
I repeat what I wrote last Saturday: “If, for merely threatening a ‘showdown’, Kennedy Agyepong has been hauled before party Disciplinary Committee, why is the party silent on someone whose criminal action nearly led to loss of eye?”
But why did Alan withdraw? Was the heat too much in the kitchen? Did his heart quake at the rumour that GH¢5,000.00 bundles were being dished out to the November delegates? I’d be surprised if Alan didn’t know the financial investment needed to win an election in Ghana; indeed, it is so colossal that many presidential hopefuls look outside for support.
I was in South Africa in 2007 when a delegation sent by a Ghanaian 2008 presidential hopeful arrived in Joburg on a money hunt.
An influential Ghanaian resident in that country took them to see a number of South African moneybags.
It is to say thank you to such “investors” that the notoriously discredited ‘Winner Takes All’ clause remains in the 1992 Constitution.
See who are on President’s list for rewards in terms of appointments or contracts.
Was someone able to convince Alan against the believability of election polls? So why didn’t he believe the Kobby Mensah poll?
A poll conducted by a team led by Professor Kobby Mensah, a Legon lecturer and political marketing expert, found that “the majority of NPP delegates have indicated that they would be voting for Alan in the party’s main delegates congress on November 4 even though Dr Bawumia won at the party’s Special Delegates Congress”.
Or, is it that Alan knew he had a weak team?
Still asking questions, is the rumour true: that Alan withdrew because he had been promised a running mate position? That would be the biggest betrayal of the millennium, literally selling his team for a mess of pottage.
The writer is Executive Director,
Centre for Communication and Culture.