Gov’t Back To 110 Ministers

…As Nana Picks Akim Swedru MP To Replace Resigned Quaittoo

President Nana Akufo-Addo has nominated Hon. Kennedy Nyarko Osei, the Member of Parliament (MP) for Akim Swedru, as Deputy Minister of Food and Agriculture to replace William Agyepong  Quaittoo, who resigned recently over his ethnocentric statement against persons from northern part of the country.

The nomination of the Deputy Minister brought the number of ministers back from 109 to 110 to feast on the national purse, which is already bleeding with huge public staff and ballooning number of government appointees.

This action however also defeats the claim by the government that there was no money to employ or recruit fresh graduates and nurses into the public sector.

It was the view of many Ghanaians that the reduced number of 109 ministers, following the resignation of William Quaittoo, would have been maintained to save the national purse.

But the President lost the opportunity to downsize the ballooned government size, which is depleting the nation’s meager and scanty economic resources.

When parliament officially returned from recess yesterday, it was expected that the legislators would meet some new economic policies by the government to help push the development process.

However, before the business of the week read to the members on the plenary by the Majority Leader, the Speaker of Parliament, Prof. Aaron Mike Oquaye, made a disclosure of the President’s nomination.

Reading a letter from the Presidency, Prof. Oquaye said, Hon Kennedy Osei has been nominated by the President as a Deputy Agriculture Minister to replace Hon. Quaittoo.

The Speaker therefore referred the nominee’s letter to the Appointment Committee of Parliament for vetting and approval.

Hon. Quaitoo, who is also MP for Akim Oda, went down in history as one of the few ministers to have thrown in the towel while in office over intense public uproar, having described farmers from the northern parts of Ghana “as difficult and liars,” when responding to questions on the fall armyworm invasion on Starr FM, an Accra-based radio station.

Meanwhile, the yet-to-be vetted deputy minister-nominee for Agric, Kennedy Osei, has waded in the controversial fall armyworm saga, claiming the pests have been defeated.

He told members of the parliamentary press corps soon after his nomination was announced on the floor of Parliament that the New Patriotic Party (NPP) government fought the worms and has successfully defeated it.

“This armyworm thing was something that was a bother to the government and at a certain point in time when the government has introduced the planting for food and job program, and this was just derailing the effort of the government.

“But the government didn’t sit down, we fought it head-on and we have defeated it. It was an issue, but now it is no more. Things are going on and the government has defeated it. Now you are not hearing about it. The government took a bold decision and we have defeated it from the system,” he claimed.

The claim by the minister-nominee contradicts his boss, Dr. Owusu Afriyie Akoto, the Food and Agriculture minister, who made claims a few days ago that the  fall armyworms cannot be fully defeated because they are “here to stay.”

“The fall armyworm is a biological phenomenon. They have been here in Ghana for two years, in Africa for two years. They will become part of our fauna. Ultimately, they will be here. Since this is a phenomenon, the armyworm is here and they have come to stay. They will never go away. The challenge is to control them and I am saying that we have controlled them,” the minister reportedly quoted.



Source: Engsalige Nyaaba

The Republic News Online

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