A group of National Democratic Congress (NDC) executives in the Greater Accra Region have added voice to what has been criticized as a lowering of the value of Ghana’s national meritorious awards, saying the non-inclusion of Speaker of Parliament, Rt. Hon. Alban Sumana Kingsford Bagbin, further deprived the whole program credibility and shine.
At a press conference in Tema, the NDC executives said the non inclusion of Speaker Bagbin meant, “the neglect of the most richly qualified person for a national award in the country at the moment.”
Mr. Amarh Evans, the Tema East NDC organizer who addressed the press on behalf of the group declared that, “this makes the whole awards programme unmeritorious.”
According to the group, the Rt. Hon. Bagbin, who is the longest serving Legislator in the whole of the Fourth Republic has been denied national honour and recognition for his pivotal role in nurturing the fourth republican democracy, “in an irresponsible act of egregious ingratitude to a true role model of our country.”
They pointed out that, “and yet, undeserving persons, including people who have been cited in the Auditor General’s report for possible mishandling of public funds have been awarded. It makes the awards a joke.”
On the 14th March, 2023, President Akufo-Addo conferred national awards on a number of individuals, including his own appointees at a national program to honour supposed outstanding individuals who have distinguished themselves in various areas of public service.
Among the awardees were the president’s own appointees, Health Minister Kwaku Agyemang Manu, whose last memory in the news was over his dubious role in the botched purchase of COVID 19 vaccines from a Dubai sheikh through some convoluted strategy that left the Minister smelling of suspicion.
Another was controversial information Minister, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, who along with Agyemang Manu, have been cited in the Auditor General’s report over questionable dealings.
“It beats the imagination that the President would select all of these people with question marks over them for national awards when Bagbin, the longest serving Legislator and mentor of many who have worked in the Legislature including the hardworking Mr. John Mahama and Nana Akufo-Addo himself was ignored.”
Mr. Amarh Evans, who addressed the press reiterated that, “the neglect of Bagbin, coupled with the awarding of those with questions to answer makes the whole award programme on the 14th March a complete joke.”
The group called on the president to strip his Ministers of the awards and hold another awards program.
“And this time, the Rt. Hon. Alban Sumana Kingsford Bagbin should headline as the most meritorious candidate.”
Source: ghanaweb.com / Richard Asamoah, Contributor