Bernard Oduro Takyi (B.O.T), the Regional Coordinator for the Commonwealth Alliance of Young Entrepreneurs (CAYE)-West Africa in charge of Ghana, Gambia, Nigeria Cameron, and Sierra Leone has bemoaned the manner in which state resources are being misused in Ghana.
The 2020 Independent Parliamentary Candidate for the Sunyani West Constituency who was speaking on Tonton Sansan on TV XYZ noted that Ghana’s public purse was being mismanaged under the leadership of President Akufo-Addo.
He recounted how then opposition leader Nana Akufo-Addo “begged” Ghanaians for their mandate and later turned his back at them after assuming office in January 2017.
“If you juxtapose what the NPP promised while in opposition with what they are doing in government, you’ll realize that they are not been truthful to Ghanaians,” he told host Prince Minkah as he condemned the opulence of government appointees under the Akufo-Addo/Bawumia administration.
“When President Akufo-Addo won the 2016 elections, he warned his appointees to go to the private sector if all they sought for was to enrich themselves with their position but today we have had corrupt cases hang on appointees who are either whitewashed or cleared by the President,” he argued.
He contended that the media under Akufo-Addo is being controlled by some persons who operate within the corridors of power to prevent the government from being criticised for the wrong they keep doing.
“Nana Akufo-Addo also stated that he would work with the ‘Anas principle’; the Anas principle is [about] name, shame, and jail yet we have appointees who have been indicted in shady deals but are still walking free,” he added,
Oduro Takyi, a former NPP activist, also recalled an Anas undercover piece dubbed ‘Number 12′ that exposed how the government was using some top officials to hoodwink the citizens.
He cited the undercover piece by investigative journalist Anas Aremeyaw Anas exposed the former president for the Ghana Football Association (GFA), Kwesi Nyantakyi who was heard telling investigators who had posed as investors that President Akufo-Addo was in his pocket and wondered why nothing has happened since the time the undercover piece went public.
“Anas’ work is to expose the wrongdoing so state apparatus take the matter up and investigate it to its logical conclusion, but, let’s ask ourselves, where is Anas today?…If a government wants to fight corruption and protect the public purse, the first institution to empower is the media, yet in Ghana, the media is being hounded,” Oduro Takyi stated.
He continued, “media practitioners are being threatened when they speak up. We all saw what happened to [investigative journalist] Manasseh Azure Awuni when his investigation works affected the government negatively. Some sympathizers had to contribute and fly him to South Africa.”
The entrepreneur believes the Akufo-Addo government is benefitting from the corrupt deals and opulence that is why he has failed to sanction officers who misuse public funds.
“The first rule for fighting corruption and protecting the public purse has been collapsed by this government,” he criticised while urging Ghanaians to vote the NPP out in the 2024 elections.
Catholic Bishops’ Concern
B.O.T’s comment comes on the back calls from the Ghana Catholic Bishops Conference to protect the public purse.
Its president, Most Rev. Philip Naameh, at this year’s plenary assembly of the association in Wa, the capital of the Upper West Region, said the Conference has observed that President Akufo-Addo’s promise to protect the public purse has become an “illusion.”
“Though poverty stares us in the face, it appears lost to those with power,” he stated. “The expressed commitment of the president of the republic to protect the public purse – a promise that citizens welcomed – seems to be an illusion now.”
“Are those managing the public purse not concerned about [the] waste and misapplication of resources that belong to all Ghanaians?”he wondered “Can this be referred to as irresponsible use of power or the lack of compassion and empathy?”
To him, “those who are entrusted with power that comes from our collective will must know that what they do with that, shapes what we all will become in the future”.