Dean of Academic Affairs, Ghana Armed Forces Command and Staff College, Dr Vladimir Antwi-Danso, says the re-nomination of some “tried and tested” ministers who served under the Akufo-Addo-led administration’s first term is an endorsement of the confidence the President had in them and their competence.
He, therefore, admonished the ministerial nominees not to disappoint the President and the good people of Ghana in the delivery of their mandate when approved by Parliament.
He further expressed regret over the exclusion of hard-working former Local Government minister, Hajia Alima Mahama.
“The President has not moved away much from the people he used in his first term, and it shows the confidence the President had in them, and I personally believe that they did very well in their respective portfolios.
“My only regret is Hajia Alima Mahama, former Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, who could not get a ministerial appointment in the second term.
“That woman was very hard working and knows the nitty-gritty of local governance and I believe it was because she lost her parliamentary seat in the 2020 Elections, and makes it difficult for her to be re-nominated,” Dr Antwi-Danso observed.
Dr Antwi-Danso, also an International Affairs expert, made the remarks in an interview with the Ghana News Agency in Accra on Friday, when analysing the President’s ministerial list.
He believes that the appointing authority rests in the President and he knows those he can work with to deliver on his mandate, as such nobody should begrudge his appointments.
“The President wants them to continue the good work and even improve on it. And every Ghanaian with the analytical mind will say that the President did very well in his first term in spite of the election results.
The evidence on the ground speaks for itself and his ministers who performed deserved to be retained,” Dr Antwi-Danso said.
President Akufo-Addo on Thursday, January 21, 2021, submitted a list of 46 sector and regional ministers-designate to Parliament for vetting and subsequent approval.
They included; 19 ministers who served in the first term whilst seven ministries created during his first tenure have either been merged or scrapped. There were eight female nominee ministers and a person with disability.
The Akufo-Addo-led administration was criticised extensively for having an elephant-size government in his first term, and promised to maintain a lean government with not more than 85 ministers this time around whilst the number of ministries have reduced from 36 to 28.
Also, there would be no deputy regional ministers. Dr Antwi-Danso said it would have been unprecedented if the President had changed the whole team and brought new faces.
On areas that needed reinforcement, Dr Antwi-Danso said the President should pay more attention to infrastructural development like road networks, railways and others, as “Research has shown that 2 per cent increment in infrastructure creates 40 per cent socio-economic activities and so we need to focus on that area as a nation”.
He also underlined the need to tackle the fight against illegal small-scale mining, otherwise known as “galamsey” since the menace could erode the gains made so far.
“We should drum home to the people that galamsey could destroy us if we don’t tackle it holistically, and so anyone coming to head the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources should work hard to address it,” he added.
On a number of women ministers nominated, Dr Antwi-Danso said he did not believe in quantity as a criterion for measuring the efficiency of a government.
“I believe the President has chosen those who deserve to be chosen because it’s not only about putting more women into government and nothing changes.
“The President is wise enough to choose women who matter and could do the job and deliver as expected, “he stated.