The Ghana Armed Forces have debunked claims and allegations circulating on the various social media platforms indicating that families and relatives of the president have used the Presidential Aircraft of the Ghana Armed Force for international shopping in the United Kingdom UK between 20th to 30th of December 2021.
Therefore, the Ghana Armed Forces GAF indicated that, the Presidential Aircraft which in their custody have never embarked on any trip to the European country for a very long time.
It could be noted that Mr Mensah Thompson who is the Executive Director of the Alliance for Social Equity and Public Accountability on his social media Facebook page announced that, the wards of a close relative of President Nana Akufo Addo have allegedly used the Presidential jet to the United Kingdom for a Christmas Shopping.
However, the Acting Director of the Department of Public Relations Officer of Ghana Armed Force GAF Commander Andy La-Anyone in a statement refuted the allegations indicating that it is false and born out of political mischief.
“We wish to state that the said publication is untrue and without any basis. We additionally wish to state that the said aircraft has not been to Europe for a very long time and this publication is, therefore, a figment of the author’s imagination,” part of the statement indicated.
Similar Claims and Allegations
It could be recalled that in June 2022 some Journalist and two individuals made a similar report that, Edward Akufo Addo who is a businessman and a biological brother to the President of the Republic of Ghana Nana Akufo Addo has used the state Presidential jet for a private trip.
Therefore, the Lawyers of Mr Edward Akyfo Addo in a suit filed against the Class Media Group, Journalist and some two penalise who made the claims against him indicated that the assertion by the journalist and such individuals are untrue and its a product of Defendant malicious imagination and were therefore purported to solely disparate him and to tarnish his good name and reputation in the country.
According to the Lawyers of Edward Akufo Addo, he has not used the state private jet during the claim period and as a matter of fact, have never used the state jet before for any trip in the country.
Presidential Jet Controversy
The issues surrounding the Presidential jet in the country is not over as some Ghanaians and some renowned politicians have kicking against the new development brought forward by the President and the incumbent New Patriotic Party with the decision to purchase a new jet if the needs be.
Several unpleasant comments and discussions have been made about the Presidential trip of President Nana Akufo Addo outside the country for state activities using a private jet of which some Ghanaians reacted to that as luxurious travel of the president became its cost a huge sum of money.
The president and his team with the support of his party members have tried to explain to the individual the rationale behind the president purchasing the private jet but it seems the reasons given have not proofed good enough to the Ghanaian people.
Several motions about the Presidential trip of President Nana Akufo Addo have been laid before parliament house calling for accountability and other necessary expenditures that have been ventured into the cost of hiring the private jet because according to the complainants notably, the Member of Parliament for North Tongu, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, Ghanaians are suffering and facing a lot of hardship because they are the taxpayers of the expenditure of the president.
Many questioned why the state own jet is available and in good shape being abandoned to patronise a private jet thereby incurring more expenses to the state.
Government To Buy New Presidential Jet
Amidst the controversy and displeased nature of Ghanaians with regards to the trip of the president and the patronage of the private jet instead of the state-owned jet, the government have planned to purchase a brand new jet for the state.
According to the Government of Ghana, this decision is brought forward by the Ghana Armed Forces GAF through recommendations.
However, the Minister for Defense, Mr Dominic Nitiwul on that not confirmed and announces that several processes and procedures are underway to the purchase of the new presidential jet for the good of the state.
Furthermore, the Defense Minister again added that several consultations between the government and the religious bodies, parliament and trade union are in place ahead of the acquisition of the new presidential jet.
The decision of the government to purchase the new jet was announced by the Director of Communications at the Presidency, Eugene Arhin.
Eugen Arhin announcing the new development at a press conference held at the Jubilee House in Accra indicated that the current state jet is not in good shape and not fit for presidential purposes further adding that it is too small to carry the president and his entourage.
Minority Kicked Against Government Plan To Buy New Jet
Upon the announcement of the government of Ghana to purchase a new jet for the country, the opposition members of parliament have opposed their idea stating that under no condition will they champion the government moves to buy a new jet for the state while a similar jet is available to perform similar activities of the new one.
On that note, the Ranking Member on Foreign Affairs Committee in Parliament, Hon Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa on behalf of the opposition National Democratic Congress NDC showed that the NDC MPs in parliament will do everything possible in their outfit to reject the government proposals for the acquisition of new presidential jet when presented in parliament.
” The Akufo- Addo administration will not get the support of the NDC in purchasing a new aircraft. We are not convinced that there is anything wrong with the current jet. The President and his ministers have not been transparent and accountable enough. This whole business of leading aircraft is borne out of an insatiable appetite for luxury. We are not going to endorse, collaborate and support anything that only seeks to advance the president’s insatiable appetite”, he said.