The minority in parliament has questioned the controversial appointment of a private legal practitioner, Dr Alexander Y. Adusei Jr, as Director for a non-existent Keta Port in the Volta Region.
According to the minority, the action taken by President Nana Akufo-Addo “is not only preposterous and infuriating, but attempts to cause wilful financial loss to the state”.
Describing the appointment as unnecessary, the minority MPs at a press conference on Monday April 1, asked Nana Akufo-Addo to reverse the appointment.
Transport Minister Kwaku Ofori Asiama in a letter dated March 19, 2019 announced the President has appointed Dr Alexander Y. Adusei Jr as the Director for Keta Port and asked the Chairman of the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GPHA) to “take the necessary action to give effect” to the appointment.
Dr Alexander Adusei Jr is said to have Ben appointed as Director for Keta Portby President Akufo Addo.
The government has since assuming office taken steps to bring to fruition the Keta Port project but actual work is yet to commence.
But the minority expressed shock at the appointment, indicating it was done to ridicule and mock the people in the Keta area who have been longing for the project to transform their local economy and create employment.
MP for Keta, Richard Quashigah, said their checks have revealed that after the President with an Executive Instrument declared the Keta coastline as a sea port, the GPHA has since taken the necessary legal processes to acquire the coastline for the project.
However, there is no functioning sea port in Keta, stating “sadly, a sea port does not exist in Keta today for which a director is required”.
He said the currently confusion created by the appointment of Dr Adusei Jr by the president could best be likened to Ghana Education Service posting a head teacher to a community where there is no school, no teachers and for that matter no students or people.
The MP said is currently even not aware whether government has found a serious investor for the construction of the Keta Port apart from the interest shown by Diamond Cement Company 2014 to build a jetty to facilitate the transportation of clinker and also to transport salt by one of it
s subsidiaries within the Keta enclave.
“As far as we know, the memorandum of understanding between the government and the investors has suffered a jolt since the investor is uncomfortable with certain clauses in the MoU,” Mr Quashigah claimed.
“Nothing has taken place except a visit to the site of the intended project at Kedzi in Keta by the Board of Directors led by the Board Chairman Mr Peter Mac Manu in August 2018.
“So to appoint a director for non-existing sea port at Keta with full status as director of Tema and Takoradi is not only preposterous, infuriating but attempts to cause wilful financial loss to the state,” Mr Quashigah argued.
He claimed there are currently two directors each for the Tema and Takoradi ports, and for that matter “two of these directors are redundant”
“If for nothing at all, why wouldn’t the President appoint one of the redundant directors as director for the imaginary Keta port rather than appointing Dr Adusei Jr bringing the number of directors of ports to five when only two are needed,” he added
In his view, “this appointment is unnecessary and a rape on the resources of GPHA and for that matter the Ghanaian taxpayer.
He grounded his argument on the fact that it cost an estimated 150,000 cedis to maintaining a director of port in a month considering the benefits that come with the position.
“I solemnly plead with President Akufo-Addo to reverse the horrendous decision of an appointment,” Mr Quashigah appealed, noting what the people in his constituency want is a functional port which they have desired for over the years.
PRESS STATEMENT BY HON. RICHARD QUASHIGAH MEMBER OF PARLIAMENT FOR THE KETA CONSTITUENCY ON THE APPOINTMENT OF A DIRECTOR FOR AN IMAGINARY KETA SEA PORT
Good morning Ladies and Gentlemen of the press. We have invited you here this morning over a matter that has caused consternations within the Keta Municipality.
Last Thursday, social media was flooded with news that the President through the Minister for Transport has appointed a private legal practitioner Dr. Alexander Y. Edusei Jnr. as Director for Keta port. The appointment letter dated March 19th 2019, which we sighted, after our verification proved that indeed the President has made such an appointment whereas a sea port, as we speak does not exist in Keta.
Having a sea port at Keta, is a cherished dream of the people of Keta and its’ environs as it will automatically lead to a positive socio economic transformation of the area; restoring it to its past glories and above all arrest the ugly unemployment devil, rampaging and devouring what remains a pale shadow of the then proud, gorgeously rich Keta, the then commercial hub of Ghana.
We the people of Keta and its environs would have hailed and applauded His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akuffo Addo, President of the Republic of Ghana to the high heavens, were he to have built in the area a full functioning sea port before appointing a director.
Sadly however, a sea port does not exist in Keta today for which a director is required. In fact it could be seen as an attempt to ridicule and mock the people of the area by the President, the current father of our homeland.
This baffling situation can be likened to Ghana Education Service posting a head teacher to a community where indeed there is no school, no teachers and for that matter no students or pupils.
As far as we know, President Akuffo Addo earlier in the year had signed an Executive Instrument, declaring the coastline of Keta as the Keta port. News of that was hailed by the indigenes of Keta with a sigh of hope since that will mean steps towards future employment generation for the young people especially and with its attendant benefits.
We are also aware that the Ghana Ports and Harbors Authority had gone through the necessary legal processes to acquire the area for the port project which will comprise of a commercial port area and leisure port area also known as marina.
As we speak, we do not know whether government has found a serious investor for the construction of the Keta Port apart from the interest shown by Diamond Cement Company, which dates back to 2014 in the building of a jetty to facilitate the transportation of clinker for the operations at Diamond Cement Company and also to transport salt which is also mined by one of its subsidiaries within the Keta enclave.
As far as we know, the memorandum of understanding between the government and the investors (Diamond Cement) has suffered a jolt since the investor is uncomfortable with certain clauses inherent in the MOU.
It is noteworthy that, a conditional approval given to Diamond Cement by the previous government was declared a nullity by Mr. Paul Ansah, currently one of the two Director Generals of the Ghana Ports and Harbors Authority in 2017 upon assumption of office by the NPP led government.
The NPP-led government then re-engaged the investors (Diamond Cement) resulting in the MOU which Diamond Cement has problems with. Nothing has since taken place except a visit to the site of the intended project at Kedzi in Keta by the Board of Directors led by the Board Chairman Mr. Peter Mac Manu in August 2018.
There is no information whatsoever that apart from the owners of Diamond Cement, government has found other interested investors in the intended Keta Port project. So to appoint a director for a non-existing sea port at Keta with full status as directors of Tema and Takoradi Ports is not only preposterous, infuriating but attempt to cause willful financial loss to the state.
Meanwhile, there are currently four directors of ports for the two existing and functioning in the country ports i.e. Tema and Takoradi Ports. In effect, two of these directors are redundant. If for nothing at all, why wouldn’t the President appoint one of the redundant directors as director for the imaginary Keta port rather than appointing Dr. Edusei bringing the number of Directors of ports to five when only two are needed. Perhaps this novelty is yet another “presidential initiative”.
This appointment is unnecessary and a rape on the resources of GPHA and for that matter the Ghanaian taxpayer.
Maintaining a director of port a month is estimated to cost between hundred and twenty thousand to a hundred and fifty thousand Ghana cedis.
A director of ports in Ghana as I am told is entitled to:
1. fully furnished official residence,
2. A driven four wheeled vehicle (a vehicle with a driver),
3. free fuel,
4. Car maintenance allowance
5. a gardener
6. Domestic servants
7. free medical care for the director, his wife and children below 21 years
8. the director as a person is insured
9. free communication
10. entertainment allowance
11. professional allowance
12. salary ranging between twenty thousand and twenty five thousand cedis.
The above listed, are the entitlement benefits for Dr. Edusei, the Director appointed by President Nana Akuffo Addo for the non-existent Keta port.
Ladies and gentlemen of the press, I Richard Quashigah, the Member of Parliament for the Keta constituency on behalf of the people of Keta Municipality in the name of God solemnly plead with President Akufo Addo to reverse the horrendous decision of an appointment.
We are desirous of having a port in Keta, the reason for which we applauded him when he issued an Executive instrument declaring the coastline of our beloved Keta as a sea port.
We have had continuous day dreams of a functional real Keta port from the day that the officials of GPHA showed us the artistic impressions of the Keta port three months ago at the British Council in Accra.
We are sad to note that this glorious dream has been disrupted with a rude shock with this latest move of his Excellency the President.
Once again, we call on the President Nana Akuffo Addo to bring back the smiles on the faces of the people of the Keta Municipality, by engaging in fruitful, pragmatic and practical approaches in making real the Keta dream for a sea port.
We thank the Media for your solidarity and all well-meaning people of our homeland.
God bless the Keta Municipality!
God bless the Volta Region!
God bless our homeland Ghana!
And God bless all who remain true and sincere to the aspirations of our people.