Former President John Mahama has withdrawn a request to keep his Cantonment residence as a retirement package following public controversy over his choice.
A letter sighted by Myjoyonline.com has the President’ signature confirming he will not keep the house at the No.3 Prestige Link at Cantonment in Accra as part of his retirement package.
Sources say the letter came after the two leaders – Mahama and Akufo-Addo reached a mutual understanding on the Cantonment residence which as attracted huge controversy on social media.
The President has been living at the Cantonment residence for some eight years. He first occupied the House reserved for Vice-Presidents and continued to used the House after he became President
He never used the official residene built for the President inside the Flagstff House, the seat of government.
By law, the country is expected to house its ex-presidents but it does not allow the ex-president to stay in the house he occupied before handing over.
A December 19, 2016 letter signed by the former Chief of Staff Julius Debrah said John Mahama would like the incoming administration to give him the “No 3, Prestige Link, Cantonment together with the adjoining facilities as his official retirement home.”
This request has made many critics angry some of whom have cited the law and previous national events as their defence.
The Presidential Transition (Amendment) Act 2016 states the outgoing President is required to vacate his official bungalow one month before swearing-in of the new President. If he fails to do so, the Administrator General is empowered to forcefully evict him.
Two days after the swearing-in the ex-president had not vacated the premises only for the December 19 letter to be made public.
Spokesperson of the NPP transition team Kojo Oppong Nkrumah told Joy News there was no agreement with Mahama to keep the House.
He said last Monday the new government had received a request which it was considering. He said a decision will be communicated at the shortest possible time.