General News of Sunday, 1 October 2017
The Twenty-Six (26) assemblies in the Northern Region are to contribute Ghc130,000, which comes to GHc 5,000 each, towards President Akufo-Addo’s 3-day official visit to the region beginning October 6, 2017.
Nana Addo will also be in the Upper East and West Regions during the 7-day trip.
A circular sighted by citifmonline.com stated that, “in a bid to put together the required arrangements for a successful tour,” each assembly is required to contribute the GHc 5,000.
The Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives’ (MMDCEs) caucus of the Northern Region, later authenticated a GHc5, 000 circular issued by the Northern Regional Coordinating Council (NRCC).
The said circular went viral on both mainstream and social media, and misconstrued that the Regional Coordinating Council made such request as part of resources mobilization for the upkeep of the President’s delegation.
Dean of the Northern Region MMDCEs caucus, Mohammed Hashim Abdullah, in a Citi News interview corroborated the reports, but dismissed the assertion that it was to cater for the President’s entourage.
According to the Mion District Chief Executive, it was a unilateral decision arrived at the end of the caucus meeting ahead of the President’s visit.
He explained that the measure was adopted to avoid any bloated expenditure by the various assemblies in connection with the President’s visit, as has happened over the years.
This, he noted, is to deepen social accountability and auditing in line with government’s corruption fight agenda.
Mohammed Hashim Abdullah recalled that there were records of similar occurrences in the past, hence the move to stop it.
He said the Regional Coordinating Council would investigate the leakage of the circular to safeguard confidential documents at the various assemblies.
He advised public servants to remain neutral and exhibit the highest professionalism during the discharge of their official duties.
Although the presidency has its own budgetary allocation, assemblies in all successive governments are often forced to bear part of such cost for the president’s trips, despite the huge financial challenges most of them are faced with, which hampers development.
Most of these assemblies have not received their full budgetary allocations from the Central Government, and they also generate very little on their own. Nana Addo to begin 7-day tour of Northern Ghana on Monday.
The 7-day tour which begins on October 2, will see the President also visit the Upper East and West Regions.
It is however unclear whether, in both regions with 13 and 11 MMDAs respectively, a similar decision has been taken on the amount to be contributed towards the visit.