Before I even welcome the news of her refund, as someone, who believed the words of Candidate Nana Addo that, the public purse has to be protected from the likes of President Mahama and his government, only for these huge and keep-able promises to turn "beans," I think this matter, as outlined in the headline, must be interrogated, not by the CID, but by my pen, paper and you the discerning reader.
Lets just understand the facts as it stands now. Every four (4) years, Ghana, a poor country by all standards come to the same place, where a committee recommends huge benefits for people in power (Article 71 Office holders) and early this year, it was Prof. Yaa Ntiamoa Baidu, Chairperson of the Committee on Emoluments to also continue on that same path.
However, interestingly someway somehow, Rebecca Akuffo-Addo and Samira Bawumia, spouses of the President and Vice President, who are no where near Article 71 Office Holders, found their own "Salary" recommendation, in a legal committee, tasked specifically with Article 71 Office holders.
To best understand how someone somewhere in all these have a well planned thought and plan going as planned, the last parliament that was dissolved for this eight parliament to be sworn in, even passed this "smuggled" salary payments to the obvious NON-Article 71-Office-Holders. To attest to this, even Members of Parliament are in court presently, suing against same.
The arguments across the political divide was the fact that, ALL FORMER FIRST LADIES AND SECOND LADIES were receiving ALLOWANCES and according to the NPP's argument, they sought to make this official now.
Interesting as it may sound, this attracted the fury of a divided Ghana. This s understandable, in a politically polarized country, where right or wrong, is determined by the NDC and NPP colours. It is no wonder therefore, for instance that, under Mahama's rule, borrowing does not show prudent fiscal policy thinking, but under the economic management of the man with a supposed Midas touch, the borrowing can triple and be termed "smart borrowing." Aside, several other similar examples under the NDC also.
Well fast, according to a statement from the First Lady, who had consulted the President, she was emphatic that, "“The First Lady, in consultation with the President of the Republic, has decided to refund all the monies paid to her as allowances from the date of the President’s assumption of office, i.e., from January 2017 to date, amounting to GHS899,097.84.”
“The First Lady has also decided not to accept any monies that have been allocated to be paid to her, pursuant to the recommendations of the Ntiamoa-Baidu committee, as approved by Parliament. She is doing this as a purely personal decision, without prejudice to the rights of others, and not to undermine the propriety of the process undertaken by Parliament,” citing the reason that pushed her as the "distasteful and “seeking to portray her as a venal, self-serving and self-centred woman, who does not care about the plight of the ordinary Ghanaian,” her statement read.
So what I have been thinking deeply about, is the fact that, later today, according to news reports:
"The First Lady of the Republic, Rebecca Akufo-Addo has refunded an amount of GH¢899,097.84 paid to her as allowance from the year 2017 to date.
A letter addressed to the Chief of Staff, signed by Mrs Shirley Laryea of the Office of the First Lady stated, “I am directed to forward, herewith, a consolidated Bank Ghana Limited cheque number 000002 for an amount of GH¢899,097.84 (Eight hundred and ninety-nine thousand ninety-seven Ghana cedis eighty-four pesewas), being the full refund for monies received from 7th January 2017 to date, as allowances given to her Excellency the First Lady of the republic.”
“Her Excellency the First Lady of the Republic is refunding the amount stated above and also takes the opportunity to decline any allowances to be paid to her in the future,” a part of the letter read.
So lets come to think of it, without mixing any emotions or whatever, Rebecca Akuffo-Addo, just like the several past first ladies and second ladies, was receiving her monthly ALLOWANCES.
This can therefore be concluded that, the added salary proposals, were going to be added, unless any one can for once prove to me that, there was anywhere in those correspondences, where it was said that, the salary proposed, was going to be arrived at, after her allowances paid her, have been deducted from it, to avoid her receiving both an allowance monthly and on top of it all, the backdated salary, that was going to start from her 1st month, when she became the First lady.
And from the same actions that is seen to be coming from the Office of the Second lady, as though it was identical twins acting in an identical manner, I can plausibly conclude that, she also will refund the allowances paid her monthly and as she has said, also rejected the proposed salary, which in my analysis, was going to be on top of the allowances.
Ghana needs fixing and I can conclude that, the fixing we need, may just be that, the current leaders who promised heaven, but cant affirm, if our forward movement is hell or staying right here on earth, who truly needs fixing.
And with renowned deliverance televangelist, TB Joshua dead and gone, I doubt if we ever have any powerful deliverance alternative, to deliver and save, the present leaders from continually doing worse, than the government, they so criticized. I rest my case.
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