New Patriotic Party (NPP) Member of Parliament (MP) for Akuapem North Constituency in the Eastern Region, Nana Ama Dokua Asiamah Adjei has described as “unfortunate” allegations by the minority caucus in parliament that President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo ‘always travel in style.
NDC’s North Tongu MP, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, has claimed President Akufo-Addo hired another luxurious aircraft on his recent foreign trips to the UK and Germany are unsubstantiated.
According to the NDC legislator, the trips on the hired jet cost the state £14,000 per hour and a cumulative ¢3.46 million.
Reacting to the allegation on her Facebook wall, the Deputy Trade and Industry Minister, quoted Oscar Wilde by saying “The cynic knows the price of everything and the value of nothing. This quote attributed seem to make sense, even today.”
Adding that “As we interrogate the cost of a project, and everything including travels, let us sometimes, assess the value and benefits derived or to be derived from same. Not every benefit can be quantified in monetary terms.”
She, however, noted that the president recent trips have been more beneficial to the state.
“To mention a few, the President’s travels have resulted in the many opportunities including the Synohydro deal which part of the amount received is being used to construct interchanges in Tamale and Takoradi as well as the construction and asphalting of inner-city roads. Specifically, the travels and the negotiation skills of the President helped in…”
“1. United States of America’s, tech giant, Google chose Ghana in the whole of Africa to establish its AI Research and Development Centre.”
“2. Similarly, in April 2021, the social media network, Twitter, announced its presence in Africa with the establishment of its continental headquarters in Ghana.”
“3. In April 2021, Ghana was chosen as the location for Germany’s West African Centre for Global Health and Pandemic Prevention. This will be one of the 8 similar centres Germany will be building all the overworld. “
“4. Last amongst the many, the President, H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, embarked on a trip to Germany. While in Germany, the President met with the Pfizer vaccine manufacturers in an attempt to convince them to help Ghana establish a vaccine manufacturing plant in Ghana.”
“On the same trip, the President used his influence to secure Ghana, 1.5 million doses of the AstraZeneca Vaccines. This is a shot in the arm of government as it focuses on vaccinating about 20 million Ghanaians by the end of the year.”
Earlier this year, Okudzeto Ablakwa stirred controversy when he alleged that President Akufo-Addo hired a private jet at the cost of ¢2.8 million on his travels to France, Belgium and South Africa at the expense of tax-burned Ghanaians.
He filed a question, and Parliament summoned Defence Minister, Dominic Nitiwul, to answer questions on the cost and why Ghana’s own presidential jet was not used.
The Minister justified the president’s decision to rent the aircraft, arguing that the capacity of the presidential aircraft can no longer carry the president’s entourage.
He told the House that regarding the cost incurred on the trip, the Finance Minister is best to provide those details.
Not satisfied with this answer, Mr Ablakwa filed another question to summon the Finance Minister to speak to the cost.
Ken Ofori-Atta appeared before Parliament and noted that questions on the cost and travels of the president will be best answered by the National Security Ministry.
Although the nation is yet to be provided with answers regarding the cost, the former Deputy Education Minister is making another allegation.
On Tuesday, the North Tongu lawmaker, in a post on his Facebook page, called for a national policy on presidential travels akin to what pertains in other jurisdictions.
“For his recent travels to the UK on the 27th of July, 2021, to attend the Global Education Summit and last week’s state visit to Germany, he blatantly refused to travel on the presidential jet.
“Instead, he opted for another top of the range VIP luxury charter jet specifically known to industry players as the Boeing 737-900ER BBJ3,” he alleged.
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