Civil Society group, Social Democracy and Development Dialogue Forum, Africa (SDDDF-Africa) has said it is alarmed filled with revulsion over the Nana Akufo Addo-led government’s decision to procure a brand new and bigger Presidential Jet.
The Presidency put out on Monday that Defense Minister would furnish the country with the necessary information with the acquisition of a new jet while there is an existing Falcon 900 EXE serving the same purpose.
A section of Ghanaians have kicked against the decision, with the opposition NDC threatening its parliamentary leadership to back off the approval of the jet.
But SDDDF-Africa in a joint statement jointly signed by its lead advocates, Yaw Asani Tano and Desmond Ntow, have launched a crusade to stop the move.
“In the view of SDDDF-Africa and as part of its #SAVE GHANA AGENDA, any process to acquire a new and bigger Presidential Jet is unnecessary and must cease forthwith because Ghana does not need a new Presidential Jet since the existing Falcon 900 Jet is in pristine condition and according to reliable Aviation sources has a 10-hour Air Endurance which is far more than the deceptive 4 – 5 hours that government propagandists would have us believe,” then statement said.
The statement also indicated that although Ghanaians have been told by the government that the current Presidential Jet, Falcon 900, is not air worthy, SDDDF could confirm the jet it “has traveled to Uganda, which is about 7hours journey, Zambia, also about 5 hours journey which are comparatively longer or just about most destinations in Europe, some of which President Akufo Addo recently visited.”
Shooting down the reasons for the acquisition of a new jet, SDDDF-Africa noted that the move exposed the government’s “heartlessness and gross insensitivity to the plight and real needs of the ordinary Ghanaian.”
Below is the statement;
MISPLACED PRIORITY: GHANA CURRENTLY DOESN’T NEED A NEW PRESIDENTIAL JET
SDDDF-Africa is alarmed and is filled with revulsion over the Nana Akufo Addo-led government’s decision to procure a brand new and bigger Presidential Jet, an information which the Presidency has put out.
In the view of SDDDF-Africa and as part of its #SAVE GHANA AGENDA, any process to acquire a new and bigger Presidential Jet is unnecessary and must cease forthwith because Ghana does not need a new Presidential Jet since the existing Falcon 900 Jet is in pristine condition and according to reliable Aviation sources has a 10-hour Air Endurance which is far more than the deceptive 4 – 5 hours that government propagandists would have us believe.
Also, at a time we are being told the Presidential Jet, Falcon 900 is not air worthy, it has traveled to Uganda, which is about 7hours journey, Zambia, also about 5 hours journey which are comparatively longer or just about most destinations in Europe, some of which President Akufo Addo recently visited.
It is as well important to state that government’s decision to communicate the new Jet procurement plan even in the face of the myriad of real issues facing this country exposes President Akufo Addo and his regime’s heartlessness and gross insensitivity to the plight and real needs of the ordinary Ghanaian.
As we speak, there are debilitating issues – a mess actually of no bed syndrome in major referral hospitals across Ghana and that linked with a failing National Ambulance service system; this, Ambulances attendants even in emergency situations will tell anyone in need of services that they (Attendants) want to be sure that a hospital bed is first secured before the Ambulance decides to set out to attend to an emergency.
A typical but very recent case is how Highlife Musician, Nana Ampadu had reportedly died. His own son’s chilling account to the media suffices.
Another case in point is one we have seen in a widely circulated video – an Ambulance in an emergency situation had broken down on a deplorable road with the patient on board. Now, as there was no other rescue option left for the Ambulance attendants, they resorted to first fix the broken down vehicle to be able to continue the journey, and this was at a time the patient was sadly but visibly gasping for breath. This is not what we see in advanced jurisdictions. Life is arguably the most important valuable and deserves all the attention needed to save.
Now, aside the above named issues, the country is also faced with many others including bad roads and unbearable traffic; Accra – Tema motorway; Tema roundabout – Afien road; – Accra – Mankessim – Cape Coast – Takoradi highway; Accra – Suhum – Kumasi highway, coupled with others such as government’s inability to pay contractors who sewed school uniforms for Free SHS students, lack of food to feed Free SHS boarding students, forcing some to become Day students, Nursing Training Colleges enrollment suspended, inability to increase the salaries of public sector workers, inability since 2018 to repay loans borrowed, (according to the IMF data), all of which (issues) basically boil down to lack of funds.
Regrettable and filled with more revulsion is to realize that the larger part of the mess is self created and instead of living up to the promise of protecting the public purse and ensuring judicious use of Ghana’s scarce resources, President Akufo Addo rather appear to have chosen the path of ostentation – luxurious private jets, luxurious Presidential 4×4 and salon vehicles and now the offensive plan to acquire a brand new and a bigger Presidential Jet.
While our President, Nana Akufo Addo is at his ostentation best, as though he is an Arabian King, his peers, Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa who oversees a better economy and can afford more luxurious private jets, have most times opted to travel by commercial flights and even sits in economy class – that is sensitivity and respect to the poor South Africans.
We have seen how Zambia’s new President, H.E. Hakainde Hichilema attended the recent United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) summit, using a commercial flight.
Considering the distance between Namibia – USA, we have also seen Namibia’s President, H.E. Hage Geingob reliably traveling to the UNGA with their Presidential Jet, Falcon 900B, which is an older version of Ghana’s which they apparently bought years before us.
SDDDF-Africa would once again wish to urge the Akufo Addo-led government to take the mandate of the people serious and to rather focus on the critical needs of the people, not personal aggrandisement as we are having to witness on a daily basis, coldly reminding the regime of the dangers of personal aggrandisement as was in Guinea etc.
God bless our homeland Ghana
And make our Nation great and strong
Bold to defend forever.
Desmond Twumasi Ntow
Yaw Asani Tano
source: Myxyzonline .com|Ghana