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General News Fri, 16 Jan 2004

Security Fears Caused cancellation Of NHIS Launch

INVESTIGATIONS by The Chronicle reveal that what was largely responsible for the botched Sub-Metro Mutual Health Insurance inauguration ceremony at Nungua in Accra yesterday was an attempt by a faction to cause trouble and embarrass the President, Mr. John Agyekum Kufuor.

The much-publicized landmark ceremony to symbolize the national launching of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) was called off at the last minute owing to “security reasons.”

“The security reason centered on chieftaincy dispute and a reported attempt by a faction to cause trouble and embarrass the President,” our search established.

It has emerged that the real security problem, if there existed any, was a planned demonstration by opposition elements. But again checks at the Kpeshie Divisional Police Command could not confirm the intention of any group to demonstrate at that time and place indicating that in effect, no group could have caused any trouble.

The security swallowed the bait hook, line and sinker, leading to the cancellation of a programme that would have boosted the image of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) in Nungua.

The truth of the matter, The Chronicle learnt, was that a prominent political figure caused a letter to be written by one of the factions, alleging that an enemy faction was plotting to embarrass the President.

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The MP for the area, Mr. Adjei Boye, deputy Minister of Roads and Transport, when contacted on the issue, denied any knowledge about a letter. “I was not aware of anything like that. In fact I was not even aware of the programme and what even caused the programme to be called off. I heard about the cancellation on air late in the night”

Expressing dismay about the matter, Mr. Adjei-Boye said, he was not privy to the programme and the selection of the area for the launching.

“You know as the MP for the area, anybody who is organizing a programme in the area, I should be informed. But this one I was not invited and I don’t know who was going to do what,” he pointed out.

He admitted the existence of a chieftaincy dispute in the area but could not say if it was the dispute that warranted the postponement of the programme.

“I felt very bad that that a programme which would enhance the image of the area was cancelled,” he said The Chronicle sources have hinted that the government was preparing to issue a statement on the aborted programme.

Source: Chronicle
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