Member of Parliament (MP) for Builsa South, Dr Clement Apaak, has demanded for a full discloser of the name(s) companies that voluntarily offered to bear the cost of the presidential diaries produced in 2017 and 2018
According to him, the Presidency owes has the onus to provide in detail names and cost of the Diaries, especially when the President as then opposition leader, levelled allegation of corruption against President John Mahama, over printing of the Presidential Diaries.
President Akufo Addo, as then candidate Akufo Addo of the New Patriotic Party(NPP), told his party supporters in Amsterdam that then President John Mahama and his government spent $10 million of tax payers’ money for the printing of presidential diaries at a time Ghanaians are faced with numerous hardships.
“I listen to the disillusionment of the average Ghana with politicians who promise them relief and end up bringing them grief when they get into office. I listen to the journalist who is saddened by the revelation that a government can spend $10 million to print presidential diaries.”
“Yes, you heard me right: $10 million. And yet we are barely able to scrape together $10 million as a down payment on our debt to Nigeria for the supply of a truly essential product, gas,” then candidate Akufo Addo was reportedly telling NPP supporters amidst applauds in Amsterdam.
After two years in office, the Akufo Addo government failed or refused to let Ghanaians know how much it cost the tax payer money to print the 2017 and 2018 Presidential Diaries.
A week ago when pressure mounted by Dr Apaak, a former Presidential Staffer, on the cost of the Diaries, the Communication Directorate of the Presidency came out that the diaries were been financed by a private company without giving out the name of that said company.
This, the Builsa South lawmaker said it was bizarre that, the President who in opposition made significant political capital out of the production of diaries under President Mahama, is refusing to disclose either the cost or the name of the private company.
He argued that, if indeed the president was a corruption fighter as he is claiming to be, no one needed to push him to publish the coast or provide name of the private company engaged to produce the diaries.
Dr Apaak however questioned President Akufo Addo, sincerity and truthfulness to the good people of Ghana after being in office for two calendar years now and yet failed or refused to disclose in detail how the Presidential diaries are been funded.
“Under our (NDC) we provided in details the company that we engaged to print the Presidential diaries, but Since 2017 and 2018, can he ( President) tell us how much it cost the state. Now they claimed it has been printed by a private company, can they provide us the name and details of how much it cost the private man to produce us these diaries,?”
“While in opposition he was able to tell Ghanaians, but now he is in charged, he should be telling us how much we are spending as a nation to print Presidential diaries,” Dr Apaak told THE REPUBLIC in an Interview in parliament last Friday.
“These are simple questions I want to ask the presidency because it is not proper to accuse your predecessors of an offence you could not justify and then you go on and also produce a diary, so we want him to come clear and let the people of Ghana know how much it cost to produce 2017 and 2018 diaries,” he said.
Dr Apaak explained that, the few years he had work at the presidency, he was not aware of such money spent on Presidential Diaries and surprised that Nana Akufo Addo as then flagbearer of the NPP decided to dabble in a campaign of disinformation with the fabrication of that whopping US $ 10 million on printing of Presidential diaries.
“The Presidency was never involved, because this was not government business, there was no tender. The Private individuals approached government to seek permission to publish the diaries. They also proceeded to solicit for sponsorship from corporate institutions.”
“When you take a Presidential Diary, you will notices at the back pages of the diaries the sponsoring companies with the adverts there, the Presidency under our time was never involved, but now that President Akufo Addo, is in charged, he can tell Ghanaians the cost,or better still provide the company name,” Dr Apaak added.
He said, he expected that the media would hold him(Nana Addo) to strict proof, especially now that he is in charge and he could tell us from his own desk the cost of the Diaries that he (President) and his Ministers are using now.
Source: the republic news online.com/Felix Engsalige Nyaaba