Appiah-Kusi To Okudzeto Ablakwah: "I Support Your Proposal But Don’t Divert Our Attention From The Size of Gov’t"

Yaw Tweneboah Appiah-Kusi has congratulated the Member of Parliament for North Tongu, in Volta Region, Hon. Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, for what he describes as “boldness in opening discussions about the size of government he is part of”.

“I think his six point proposal is very commendable. This has to do with travel, fuel and the type of cars being used by members of government, coupons and a few other things he mentioned,” he opined.

He however, disagreed with Hon. Okudzeto Ablakwa for seeking to defend the current number of ministers appointed.

“As much as I agree with Okudzeto’s proposals, I am sorry to say that he only skirted the issue. His article in so many respect amounts to an attempt to divert our attention from the size of government”.

If anything at all, his arguments reinforce the belief of the majority of us who feel that the size of the government in terms of numbers is too big and is a major drain on the economy.

It is important to note that, the current Mahama administration is as guilty of all the issues Okudzeto elucidated in his piece, as the Rawlingses, Kufuor and Mills government, even if not more.

Speaking on Asempa FM, Yaw Tweneboah Appiah-Kusi called in from Virginia, U.S.A, where he is sojourned, to react to Hon. Okudzeto Ablakwa’s article outlining a set of proposals he believes would effectively help the country.

Mr. Yaw Tweneboah Appiah-Kusi has called for collaboration and contribution from all Ghanaians on this issue and stated his agreement with most of the issues and proposals tabled by the young representative of the people of North Tongu, but was quick to say that he should not seek to draw the attention of Ghanaians from the size of government and focus on only his six-point proposal.

“Both the reduction of the size of government and the six-point proposal are important and must therefore be done concurrently…It is important to note that, the current Mahama administration is as guilty of all the issues Okudzeto elucidated in his piece..” Tweneboa Appiah Kussi added.

Below is the six-point Proposal by Hon. Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa which in his view, would lead to saving fuel consumption:

1) Maintain and enforce the decision to abolish special assistants and special aides to Ministers paid by the State except that Ministers can hire such persons and pay them privately thus from their own resources if they so wish.

2) There should be equal public interest in the number of Presidential Advisors, Presidential Aides, Presidential Staffers and others engaged at the Presidency and the list should be made public in the interest of transparency and good governance. I was amazed to see a rather unending list of Presidential staffers and consultants at the Presidency during the transition that ushered out one of our former Presidents.

3) Vet all invitations to international conferences that require the State of Ghana to purchase flight tickets for Ministers and other public officials and ensure that foreign travels by public officials strictly meet our nation’s development priorities. The sizes of such delegations should also be scrutinized. Foreign travels have always been a burden on the public purse and should meet stricter regulations.

4) Ban the use of cross country vehicles for intra-city usage. Only fuel efficient salon vehicles should be used for such purposes. All public officials should learn from the current President and other colleagues who make it a point to observe this. This will lead to savings in fuel consumption.

5) Match fuel coupons to registration numbers of official vehicles. In other words, fuel coupons should come with specific vehicle numbers so that only authorized persons and vehicles will utilize these fuel coupons. This will ensure fuel coupons are used by its intended public officials and its intended official vehicles. When this is done, we will see a curtailment of fuel coupons getting into the wrong hands and fuel getting into wrong vehicles.

6)Develop new specifications for the kind of vehicles that will be designated as official vehicles to also achieve uniformity and make savings. The objective here is to ensure that government takes advantage of new technology in fuel efficiency such as hybrid vehicles and vehicles with very limited fuel consumption capacity that do not necessarily compromise safety.