Carlos Ahenkorah

Pressure Group OccupyGhana has added its voice to calls by many Ghanaians for the prosecution and withdrawal of the candidature of the Tema West MP, Carlos Ahenkorah.

The group said it is disappointed in the Deputy Trade Minister’s action after he admitted that after testing positive for COVID-19, and before obtaining a subsequent negative test, he recklessly and callously put himself in the public space, visiting registration centres in the Tema West Constituency.

“By this, he put his fellow citizens at such high risk of contracting the coronavirus disease.

“As a minister of state of a government that is battling hard against this pandemic, he has shown a remarkable lack of good sense on the social and physical distancing that is required by law, on the pain of criminal prosecution.
 
“His actions show gross disrespect to the pronouncements of the President concerning keeping the populace safe, and his behaviour makes a mockery of any enactments government has made in the fight against the coronavirus,” OccupyGhana said in a press statement, Friday.
 
According to the group, his action is worrying “especially in the wake of the political primaries, which in the main, also ignored the law and common sense of social and physical distancing, and the obvious struggle of the Electoral Commission to enforce these rules in the ongoing voter registration.

“We fear that the combination of these events and the irresponsible conduct of government officials such as Mr Ahenkorah will lead to an increase in infections and possibly, deaths.”

OccupyGhana said these are the reasons why it finds the Deputy Minister’s “conduct despicable, outrageous and selfish. This conduct and his defensive nonchalance are not befitting of a person occupying the high offices of a Deputy Minister.”

According to the group, “if no steps are taken against Mr Ahenkorah, it will cast the government as not just being hypocritical, but as being incapable of keeping the citizenry safe and incompetent to enforce laws it has made.

“Many have been taken to task for doing way less than Mr Ahenkorah has done, including not wearing a mask while driving alone.”

OccupyGhana is, therefore, calling upon president Akufo-Addo to remove him from office forthwith.

Few minutes after the release of the group’s statement, Mr Ahenkorah sent his resignation to the president which was accepted.

However, the group is also calling on the police “to investigate his actions, and if found to have breached the law, to prosecute him. We also call on the New Patriotic Party to withdraw him as their candidate for the upcoming parliamentary elections.

“We conclude by urging government and the Electoral Commission to ensure that participants in the ongoing voters’ registration fully comply with the COVID19 security, health, safety, and personal hygiene protocols,” it said.