My appointment is not a demotion – Bagbin

The Minister designate for Works and Housing, Hon Alban Bagbin has asked all newly appointed ministers to accept their post in good faith and

contribute their best to help President Mills achieve the better Ghana agenda he has promised Ghanaians.

In an interview with Citi FM, Alban Bagbin refuted suggestions that his ministerial appointment is a demotion.

Although he acknowledged that his former position is higher than that of a Minister, the outgoing Majority Leader said a ministerial position gives him the platform to add his knowledge to the building of a better Ghana.

“The position of the Majority Leader is quite high, the power and authority is higher than a minister of state… but I don’t think it is that of demotion”, Alban Bagbin said.

President John Evans Mills on Monday, January 25, made some key changes in his cabinet which saw top ministers lose their jobs with other’s relocated.

The reshuffle is the first under the Mills-led government since assuming power in January 2009.

Alban Bagbin has been moved to head the Ministry of Works and Housing with former Interior Minister, Cletus Avoka taking over from him as the new Majority Leader of Parliament.

Speaking on the Citi Breakfast show Bagbin, said his new post as minister does not come to him as a surprise, because the president hinted his intention to him long before his appointment was made public.

“It was not just planted on me, his Excellency had a discussion with me on the subject matter and since he has the mandate of the people to lead the country to implement his decision…he is better placed to decide the membership of his team to assist him see through the national vision,” he said.

He added that his exit from his former position as Majority Leader of Parliament will not have any negative impact in parliament since he is still a member of parliament and will continue to participate in the proceedings of the house.

Some key ministers however lost their positions in President Mills’ first reshuffle of his administration; S.S Nayina has been replaced by his Deputy, Hon Moses Magbenda as the new Northern Regional Minister with Mr. Nasamu Asibigi as his deputy.

The reshuffle also saw MP for North Dayi, Ms. Akua Sena Dansoa being sent to head the controversial Ministry of Youth and Sports, the first time for a woman in the history of the Fourth Republican Constitution.

The current Minister of Information, Zita Okaikoi is heading for the Tourism Ministry.

She replaces current Tourism Minister, Juliana Azumah Mensah who is also the MP for Ho East. Azumah Mensah has also been moved to the Women and Children’s Ministry.

The rest are:

E.T Mensah – Minister of Social Welfare and Employment

Martin Amidu – Interior Minister

John Tia – Minister of Information

Mahama Ayariga – Deputy Trade Minister

Inusah Fuseini – Deputy Energy Minister

Hon. Cletus Avorka – Majority leader in parliament

Hon. Rashid Pelpuo – Dep. Majority leader

The position of a Presidential spokesperson has been scrapped in President Mills’ new ministerial structure.

The Minister of Information will now speak for the Presidency.