Minority Leader in Parliament, Haruna Iddrisu

The Minority in Parliament says it will not support the presidency’s bid to procure a new presidential aircraft.

According to Haruna Iddrissu, the planned acquisition is a total waste of time and public resources.

“What is this that we hear that because the President cannot bath in the current Falcon, he must buy a new jet, and then we should be interested in providing for the comfort of the President when Ghanaians are reeling under economic hardship?” he quizzed.

On two occasions this year, Ranking Member on Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, questioned what he described as the extravagant foreign travels of President Akufo-Addo on private planes.

This generated discussions with some Ghanaians asking why the President has to fly in hired private aircrafts when the country owned a functional presidential jet.

But the Defence Minister, Dominic Nitiwul told Parliament that the configuration of the current Presidential jet, a falcon 900EX purchased during the era of former President John Kufuor, did not meet the travel needs and security of the President.

On September 27, Director of Communications at the Presidency, Eugene Arhin has disclosed that government is in the process of acquiring a bigger aircraft for presidential travels.

“Government is already in the process of acquiring a bigger jet for use,” he said at a press briefing at the Jubilee House on Monday.

This move does not sit well with NDC MP’s in Parliament.

Speaking to Accra-based Citi TV, Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu insisted that it is a misplaced priority.

“This is a misplaced priority, it is a misplaced expenditure and, therefore, should not get our support”, the MP said.

He was emphatic that his side of the aisle will do everything possible to ensure that the plan does not see that light of day especially when the government is yet to disclose the cost of the President’s previous foreign trips.”

“No one has said the President should not engage in travels, but let us know what is wrong with the present Ghanaian Presidential jet that we have to go in for a luxurious comfortable jet at the expense of the people. But we do not fight battles standing solo.

“We don’t believe in that posture. So what is important is that the caucus will meet as a matter of necessity”, he insisted.

Meanwhile, Eugene Arhin did not give the specifics of the aircraft deal, but said the Defence Minister would shed light on the development at the appropriate time.



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