Deputy General Secretary of the governing New Patriotic Party, Haruna Mohammed, has taken a swipe at former President John Dramani Mahama for promising to abolish ex-gratia under Article 71. He said the former Head of State cannot be trusted when he promises to do something for the people of Ghana.

Mr. Haruna maintained that the statement of the NDC 2020 Presidential Candidate is not only laughable but sign of a desperate person for political power.  

 “The content he delivered was very laughable apart from he being incompetent, I never knew he can be that desperate. John Mahama is one person who cannot be trusted, he can’t be trusted for one minute; he spoke about scrabbing the Article 71 or reviewing it same way in May 2015 when he was the sitting President at that time – he made very clear he was going to review that particular article.”

Mr. Haruna added, “clear one year seven months to elections – he had the power as the President he seeks to become today, he was the president but he could not do it. Today, because of his desperation, he says he would review it when he becomes President, he should have been telling us this when he was not the President.”

Mr. Mahama during the launch of his campaign on Thursday (March 2, 2023) at the University of Health and Allied Sciences (UHAS) in the Volta Region ahead of the NDC presidential primaries announced he will begin processes to scrab the ex-gratia package as part measures to reduce the financial burden on the public purse.  

But the NPP Deputy Scribe in an interview told THE CUSTODIAN Northern Regional Correspondent the late President John Evans Atta Mills inaugurated the Commission for the review of the 1992 Constitution and the report of the commission was presented to the Mills/Mahama led NDC government, adding Mills couldn’t see to the implementation of the report of the constitutional review commission.

According to Mr. Haruna Mohammed, it was prescribed in the review that article 71 – ex-gratia should be scrabbed, stating John Mahama failed to implement the recommendation.

“He moved on to enjoy the ex-gratia and set up another committee for emoluments of former leaders in line with ex-gratia description” he revealed.

The presumptive presidential candidate of the opposition NDC for the 2024 general elections also promised to operate with about 60 Ministers and deputies in his next government and vowed not to operate a family and friends government like in the past.

But, the NPP Deputy General Secretary in his response noted the former leader was ill advised to have made such a comment, pointing out that when he [John Mahama] was President of the Republic, it was ten regions and he had 86 ministers but President Nana Akufo-Addo is governing sixteen regions with 84 ministers.