Mahama not abusing incumbency – Communications Minister, Dr Edward Omane Boamah
The Ghana Integrity Initiative (GII) had cautioned Mr Mahama to desist from using the privileges he has as president to the benefit of his political ambition as the country heads to the November 7 general elections.
Executive Director of GII, Linda Ofori Kwafo, told Class News recently in an interview that: “If he [president] has those powers and privileges, he shouldn’t abuse [them], so that the elections can be level-playing for everybody. It’s like going into an examination hall, and you are already going with a paper that has the answers from A to Z. It is not fair if that happens.”
But Dr Boamah says he does not agree with the GII and others, who are criticising the president for abusing incumbency. As far as he is concerned, the President’s ‘Accounting to the People’ tour is not meant to canvass for votes, but campaigning will start in June.
Citing an example to buttress his point, he told Kwadwo Asare Baffour Asare on Asempa FM’s Ekosii sen on Thursday April 21 that: “…Last year, I commissioned enhanced information communication centres all over the country, will they label that as me doing campaign?” he questioned.
He questioned the criteria used by the GII and other critics before concluding that the president is using state resources to the benefit of his political ambition of gaining a second term in office.
According to him, such assertions are just expressions of opinion, which has no basis.
Meanwhile, Mr Mahama has said he is not campaigning yet. Officials of the governing National Democratic Congress (NDC) have also parried the incumbency abuse flak.
Deputy General Secretary Koku Anyidoho recently said three-time flagbearer of the NPP Nana Akufo-Addo did worse when his party was in power, ahead of the 2008 elections. Also, acting Executive Director of the Ghana National Service Scheme (NSS) Dr Michael Kpessah-Whyte told Class News that: “Instead of sitting in the office, let me go with the president and explain to the president…why we are doing this bridge here, why we are doing this road here, and meet with the communities and explain to them the benefits; we call it abuse of office? What exactly do we want as a society? I think that sometimes we should focus on the bigger picture….”