SECURITY PARROT UNDER SIEGE
National Security Advisor, General Nunoo-Mensah (rtd) seems to have irritated and provoked the majority of Ghanaians over his comments which directed workers in the country who were dissatisfied with their conditions of service to pack bag and baggage and leave the country.
The National Security Advisor, who incidentally stood on the same platform with the president of the republic, John Dramani Mahama during the inauguration of a nine-unit classroom block at the O’Reilly Senior High School, further incensed an already agitated labour front with his comments.
Some labour unions in the country are already on strike, while others have threatened to join their colleagues to demand for better working conditions.
An incensed National Security Advisor suggested that workers who were dissatisfied with their working conditions and resort to strike action should not be paid.
‘If anybody goes on strike, he should not be paid. If you cannot sacrifice for the country the way some of us have done, then get out,’ he suggested among many other damning comments.
His statement has since received a lot of criticisms from organised labour and many other Ghanaians, many of whom have described the comments as an “abysmal failure in communication,’ with others calling for his immediate dismissal.
The one time member of the Provisional National Defence Council resigned from the military junta when his cousin, Major Sam Acquah, together with three judges, were callously murdered under strange circumstances at the Bundase Military Range in the Accra Plains, after being abducted under the cover of darkness by some unidentified assailants on June 30,1982.
He had accused the then Jerry John Rawlings Administration of complicity in the murders.
In 1992, he stood for election on the ticket of the New Patriotic Party in the Efutu constituency and lost to Mike Hammah.
He returned to the umbrella family shortly after President John Evans Atta Mills won elections in 2008, as a Security Advisor and has since caused an uneasy calm within the rank and file of the NDC, who had doubted his loyalty to the party.
Not too long ago news was rife that the National Security advisor was due to be pruned from government. His latest comment, however, seems to have presented the right platform to those who think he has over stayed his welcome in the umbrella family.
The New Patriotic Party (NPP), in the wake of the mounting criticism has expressed shock and disappointment at the outburst of the National Security Advisor, General Nunoo-Mensah (rtd) and has called for his immediate resignation.
“By his careless outburst at organized labour, which will only create a platform for further tension and animosity between government and unionized labour, Gen. Nunoo Mensah has exhibited to all, his incompetence in advising both Presidents Mills and Mahama on national security matters.” the NPP noted.
The NPP further contended that if his recent call to members on the labour front to pick their passports and get out of the country is reflective of the kinds of advice he has been giving the President on national security matters, then it is no wonder that the national labour landscape is what it is today.
“Accordingly, we call on the National Security Advisor to resign his position or be shown the exit by the President to show that he, the President does not endorse this kind of irresponsible conduct in his government.” the NPP demanded
CLOGSAG takes pound of flesh
Meanwhile, Striking Civil and Local Government Staff Association of Ghana (CLOGSAG) have heavily descended on the National Security Advisor, Brigadier General Nunoo Mensah over his comments.
The Greater Accra Secretary of CLOGSAG, Samuel Collinson, in an interview with XYZ News described the comments as irresponsible and shameful.
‘CLOGSAG sees it as an irresponsible and shameful statement from such an authority. There are better avenues by which he could have addressed this issue but the way he addressed this was shameful,’ Mr. Collinson said.
The General Secretary of the Ghana Medical Association, Dr. Frank Serebour also described the National Security advisor’s comments as misplaced and unfortunate.
The GMA General Secretary stressed that workers reserve the right to go on strike if the people responsible for their welfare fail to leave up to expectation.
‘The mere fact that some of us chose to stay in this country is a sacrifice because some of us had the opportunity to go and work in other countries like some of our colleagues and be paid better than what we are being paid now and yet we decided to stay. This I see as a big sacrifice’.
‘I believe that when he goes back home and think about it critically, he will realize that he didn’t speak well’.
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