Government communicators are not doing well in their communication on the controversial military agreement Ghana has signed with the United States of America (USA), Kwame Jantuah, Chief Executive Officer of the Africa Energy Consortium, and a member of the Convention Peoples Party (CPP), has said.
According to him, the communicators, led by the Minster of Information, failed to intervene at the appropriate time when the controversies about the deal started emerging.
Although the Minister of Defence, Dominic Nitiwul addressed the media on the development, he said that intervention was not enough.
Parliament approved the defence cooperation deal which has been mired in a lot of controversy. The minority in parliament staged a walkout during the approval.
Speaking on this matter on TV3’s New Day programme on Saturday April 7, Mr Jantuah said, among other things, that the “second problem has to do with NPP or Government communication lapse. Before the president even came to speak, if the NPP or the government had taken some actions before the president came in it would have stayed this thing.
“According to the agreement, there was an inter-ministerial consultation. That inter-ministerial consultation had certain institutions that were part of it so the moment this news broke on radio, when the military base thing was being touted everywhere, the next point of call the following day was to have a press conference led by the Minister of Information with the Foreign Minister and the Defence Minister present to now give us a resume of what went into the negotiations.
“At that meeting everybody there could have asked all the questions they needed to ask. If that had come first and the questions were thrown right, left centre , Ghanaians would have been able to ask whatever questions the needed to ask , the president will now have come to seal it.”
Meanwhile, president Nana Akufo-Addo has urged Ghanaians to, as far as a defence deal signed between his government and that of the United States is concerned, “reject the unspeakable hypocrisy of the naysayers who led our country into bankruptcy in the worst economic record of modern Ghanaian history”, adding: “Let us rise above them.”
Addressing the nation on Thursday night to clear the air about the defence cooperation deal which has been mired in a lot of controversy at home, President Akufo-Addo rejected accusations by the main opposition National Democratic Congress and its Minority in parliament that he has sold Ghana’s sovereignty to the US for $20million per the deal.
According to him, the NDC and its Minority are being hypocritical about the whole deal.
“How else would we have exposed the unspeakable hypocrisy of a fraternity of some frontline politicians who make a habit of running with the hares and hunting with the hounds who secretly wallow in the largesse of the United States of America while at the same time promote anti-American sentiment to a populist constituency.
“We have to take issue with the frontline politicians who have sought to mislead the people in this blatant manner and those who for mischievous purposes leaked the document destined for the scrutiny of parliament premature to a section of the media who then went on to describe it as a secret document.
“How could a document, intended for the consideration of parliament be described as a secret document? How could anyone who has been in government and run the administration of this nation feign ignorance of the conditions under which Ghanaian troops undertake peace-keeping operations or the conditions under which our country has collaborated with major international institutions?
“It is difficult to understand that such people, knowing what they do know, will go about so blatantly to confuse people and go as far as calling for the overthrow of our democracy. A democracy that has become the beacon of good governance in Africa, a democracy that has survived for a quarter of a century and encompassed even the most irresponsible episodes of governance in a state of unity and stability, a democracy that has provided the framework for systematic development in our social and economic welfare, and assured us of the longest uninterrupted period of stable constitutional governance in our history? Surely this is the kind of cynical manipulations by reckless self-seekers which at the fullness of time, the people of Ghana will acknowledge and condemn and I’m sure that as the facts become clear and widely available and as the people come to terms with the evidence, they will reject the falsehood and deliberate attempts to destabilise our peaceful country. Truth is sacrosanct.
“So, let me state with the clearest affirmation that Ghana has not offered a military base and will not offer a military base to the USA. Indeed the USA has not made any request for such consideration and consisted with our established foreign policy, we will not consider any such request,” the President said.