Ghanaian Chronicle

Amissah-Arthur has taken the right decision

Date published: October 31, 2012

The Ghanaian Times yesterday reported that Vice President Kwesi Amissah-Arthur had moved into the Flagstaff House to occupy the office allocated to the Vice President.

According to the story, the decision to relocate to the Presidential Palace was approved by National Security. The story further stated that all the security concerns in and around the palace had been addressed by National Security, in addition to fixing structural defects on the building.

First of all, The Chronicle wishes to congratulate the Vice President for the bold decision he has taken to operate from the Flagstaff House. President John Mahama had earlier set up a presidential committee to advise him on the use of the new Government House, therefore, we are not surprised at the decision of Mr. Amissah-Arthur.

The facility was built to house both the President and his Vice at great cost to the nation, therefore, allowing it to lie fallow on political grounds was not the best of decisions. If Mr. Amissah-Arthur has now decided to use the facility, it should be welcome news to all Ghanaians.

The Chronicle is, however, concerned with the role National Security has played in the use of the facility so far. The late President Mills had consistently told the nation that his security advisors advised him not to use the Presidential Palace, because it had some security defects, but for close to four years that President Mills was in power, National Security could not address the said security concerns.

Surprisingly, four months after the demise of the late President, the same National Security has managed to fix all the problems at Flagstaff House for the Vice President to move into the facility. Clearly, what has happened is an insult to the intelligence of Ghanaians.

Many were those who argued that some hawks around President Mills would simply not allow the man to use the Presidential Palace for political reasons, and National Security allowed the likes of Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa to churn out all kinds of stories as to why the President could not use the facility, as both his residence and office.

If today, National Security has managed to address all these security concerns within this relatively shortest possible time, why did it take the same security establishment close to four years to fix the same problem? It is about time we considered national assets as such, instead of playing political games with them.

The money that went into the construction of the Presidential Palace could have built a number of clinics and roads to the benefit of the ordinary man on the street, yet we allowed it to lie fallow all these years.

Enough is enough, and under no circumstance should any future government or president play this kind of political game with our national assets, as the late President Mills and his advisors did.




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