Kofi Portuphy must appear before parliament

Fri, 1 Dec 2017 Source: Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.

It is a problem that the Akufo-Addo Administration cannot and must not be expected to passively and unreservedly assume. I am talking about the alleged non-payment of the salaries of some staff members of the National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO) – (See “About 1,000 NADMO Workers Starve 3 Years Without Pay” Citifmonline.com / Modernghana.com 10/23/17). A letter published under the preceding referenced news caption is alleged to have been written to the current Minister of the Interior demanding their 3-year’s worth of retroactive paychecks.

Now, we must quickly point out that during the period in question, which is between 2013 and 2016, it was the Mahama-led government of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) that was in charge of the public purse. But even more significantly ought to be highlighted the fact that it was Mr. Kofi Portuphy, the current National Chairman of the National Democratic Congress, who was the National Coordinator of NADMO. Mr. Portuphy, obviously, has some explaining to do before Parliament.

If these allegedly unpaid workers happen to have been recruited under the “Atta-Mills Doctrine,” or they happen to have been offered their jobs primarily because they were card-carrying members of the then-ruling party, then, of course, somebody at the headquarters of the National Democratic Congress must be summoned by the Speaker of Parliament to explain the circumstances under which these 1,000 NADMO workers got hired. Some of the assets of the NDC may have to be liquidated to settle the debts owed these party recruits of NADMO.

And if they are, indeed, party employees, then the aforesaid unpaid NADMO workers may have to be promptly shown the exit, as it were, while the proper procedures are initiated to have new employees hired to replace them or make NADMO more professionally constituted. The same procedure ought to be followed by the Akufo-Addo Administration vis-à-vis all publicly owned and operated civil and public service establishments. As to why these allegedly unpaid NADMO workers would remain at post without pay for so long staggers the imagination, to say the least.

But, of course, in the sort of socioeconomic and cultural dispensation in which Ghanaians presently find themselves, especially after 20 years of the effective destruction of our national economy by the Rawlings-led regimes of the Provisional National Defense Council (PNDC) and the so-called National Democratic Congress, it is quite conceivable that what the allegedly unpaid NADMO employees are claiming may be quite accurate.

Indeed, when President Addo DankwaAkufo-Addo laments figuratively that his immediate predecessor, namely, former President John Dramani Mahama, did not leave him any substantive or worthwhile legacy, it is to be squarely envisaged in the preceding terms.

But, of course, Nana Akufo-Addo may be oversimplifying matters, for such legacy of abject economic privation was created by regimes preceding that which was led by Mr. Mahama, even when one reckons the fact that the latter was a bona fide participant of the Rawlings-founded and chaperoned National Democratic Congress and a veritable product of the Rawlings-led institutional antecedent of the Provisional National Defense Council.

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Columnist: Kwame Okoampa-Ahoofe, Jr., Ph.D.