Akufo-Addo: Sack Ofori-Atta, Reduce Government Size, Other Demands President Has Not Adhered To

Akufo-Addo: Sack Ofori-Atta, Reduce Government Size, Other Demands President Has Not Adhered To

  • President Nana Akufo-Addo assumed the reins of power on January 7, 2017, with a mandate to serve the good people of Ghana in rain or shine
  • However, with economic conditions deteriorating and culminating in a return to the IMF for an economic bailout, Ghanaians have expressed their desire for radical measures to be instituted
  • Some of those calls including demands for Ofori-Atta to be sacked and reduction in government size have not been adhered to by the president which has irked a section of the populace

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President Nana Akufo-Addo’s second term in office which began on January 7, 2021, has been mired in some controversial moments.

The president who rode to power on a wave of a promise to massively transform the economy has seen that goodwill wane significantly.

Sack Ken Ofori-Atta, reduce the size of your government are some of the numerous demands that Ghanaians have made that President Akufo-Addo has not adhered to
President Akufo-Addo and a dejected-looking Ghanaian Image Credit: @Ghana @nakufoaddo
Source: Facebook

With economic conditions deteriorating by the day, the Akufo-Addo-led government returned the country to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for a $3 billion economic bailout programme.

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That led to agitations from a section of the populace with Ghanaians expressing their desire for radical measures to be instituted.

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Among some of the demands Ghanaians have made include for the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta to be sacked, and also for the size of the government to be reduced. YEN.com.gh compiles some of them.

Sack Ofori-Atta

Skyrocketing prices of goods and services, cedi-dollar depreciation and hyperinflation led to an economic crisis.

The resultant effect which was a return to the IMF didn’t sit down too well with a section of the populace who demanded the Finance Minister be sacked.

The Majority caucus of parliament backed those calls and petitioned President Akufo-Addo to relieve Ofori-Atta of his ministerial duties.

The MPs from the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) however acceded to a request for the minister to stay in office and present the 2023 budget as well as conclude the IMF negotiations.

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But that call appears unheeded even after the presentation of the budget and the reaching of a Staff-Level agreement with the IMF.

Reduce The Size Of The Government

An appointment of an unprecedented number of Ministers saw a gargantuan Akufo-Addo-led government of some 110 Ministers and deputies.

That number reduced slightly and is still hovering over the 100-number mark after the president scrapped 8 ministries when he began his second term in office.

But with the country’s scarce resources said to be dwindling at a faster rate, some Ghanaians have intensified their calls for the president to reduce his size of government to reflect the challenging times.

Again, the president has turned a deaf ear to those calls as he keeps on postponing his much-touted reshuffle list.

Building National Cathedral, Other Wasteful Spending

With the current economic crisis, a section of the populace questioned the rationale behind pumping taxpayers into the construction of the National Cathedral project.

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Despite being a personal pledge of the president, Ghanaians have been left flabbergasted at the insistence of the president to build the project at all costs.

On several occasions, he has indicated that the edifice will be completed before he leaves office.

Also, the large size of the president’s convoy has drawn widespread criticism as some question whether it's prudent to have more than 15 V8s accompanying him during local engagements with Ghanaians.

That has remained largely the same as the president still treks around the country with a large convoy size amid accusations that his official seat is assigned a V8.

Domestic Debt Exchange Programme Must Be Suspended

With more and more people kicking against the controversial Domestic Debt Exchange programme in its current form, some well-meaning Ghanaians including religious bodies are demanding its immediate suspension.

As the country negotiates the $3 billion dollar deal with the IMF, one of the conditions before the approval of the facility is for the country to bring its debt to sustainable levels.

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Duncan-Williams, Eastwood Anaba call for immediate halt of National Cathedral project

Ahead of the January 31 deadline, more and more people including the Christian Council of Ghana, the Minority in parliament, the Pensioners Forum and Individual Bondholders among others, are pushing for the deal in its current form to be rejected.

But the government remains adamant and has served notice it will proceed with it as it remains crucial to securing an IMF bailout.

Under the programme, bondholders will see their investments being traded for new ones which have maturing dates some as far as 2037.

Inability To Properly Seek Inputs From Stakeholders Before Introducing Policies

The Akufo-Addo-led government’s inability to properly seek inputs from stakeholders before introducing programmes and policies has been widely criticized.

The government has been accused of failing to build the right consensus.

As the current economic crisis gets worse by the day, some have proposed a dialogue for all experts to be assembled to seek their input on the way forward and propose solutions.

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Those calls have again fallen on deaf ears as the president doesn’t seem to be in the mood to seek any views from Ghanaians.

Some people also hold the view that the government is less tolerant of criticism.

Granting Of Tax Waivers To Cronies

Some financial experts say the country has lost millions of dollars through the unnecessary granting of tax waivers to cronies of the government.

In March 2022, the National Communications Officer of the largest opposition NDC, Sammy Gyamfi accused the president of granting tax waivers of up to $24 million to his brother-in-law for the construction of a hotel project.

Some say these tax waivers deny the country the needed resources to be used for other developmental projects.

As the year unfolds, will this list grow in size or the president will start listening to Ghanaians thereby shortening it?

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NPP's Assibey-Yeboah slams Ofori-Atta’s DDEP; fears looming economic catastrophe

2022 In Retrospect: Scandals that Rocked Akufo-Addo’s Government This Year

Earlier, YEN.com.gh compiled some of the notable scandals that rocked the government from January to December 31, 2022.

With some luck, the government would look back at them and make amends for 2023 or serve as lessons for the next government.

Some of them include the unending National Cathedral controversy, and the Serwaa Broni scandal among others.

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Source: YEN.com.gh

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