President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has been criticised for comments he made about slowing down on development in Ekumfi because the constituents voted against the New Patriotic Party’s (NPP) candidate, Kingsley Ato Cudjoe. A political scientist at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), Dr. Richard Amoako Baah, has said the President shouldn’t have made the comments in the first place.
According to him, Akufo-Addo ought to have discussed with his advisers “and let them know what you’re going to say, how you should say, when you should say it. So, when you go there, it is not something you should say off your head. That’s not how you run a country. Because for sure, you’ll say something in bad taste and in this case, that’s what happened.”
Speaking on Ghana Tonight on TV3 Wednesday, January 17, 2024, the former head of the Political Science department of KNUST said the President’s statement “didn’t help them [Ekumfi people]. You don’t talk to people in a country, constituencies like you’re talking to your friends in the kitchen. So, in this case, he said he was being honest with them, it’s a good thing but it turned out to be bad. It would have been better if you didn’t say anything at all.”
President Akufo-Addo had admitted that he looked away from the development challenges of Ekumfi because the constituents voted against the New Patriotic Party’s (NPP) candidate, Francis Kingsley Ato Cudjoe. According to the President, during his first term when Mr. Cudjoe was the Member of Parliament for Ekumfi, he made him a deputy minister and a substantive minister in order to channel some development projects to the constituency.
However, following Mr. Ato Cudjoe’s defeat in the 2020 elections, he (the President) ignored the needs of the constituency. “I made Ato Cudjoe (an indigene of Ekumfi) a minister and a deputy minister so he could do something there for you. But unfortunately, he lost his seat in the next election and it’s all part of the reason I also ignored you for a while, I must be honest with the truth. But I’ve heard you and the year has just started so by the time the year ends, I’ll see what I can do,” President Akufo-Addo assured.
The President’s admission followed a demand from the Kyedomhemaa of Ekumfi traditional area, Nana Enyimfua III, for the state to put up a project in the area to help the youth to make a living. The queen mother, during a visit to the Presidency to thank Mr. Akufo-Addo for renovating the Asomdwe Park –the burial grounds of late President Mills –said the state is yet to honour any of the promises it made to the family of late Prof. Mills and the community since the demise of their kinsman.
She pleaded with the President to fulfil at least one of the promises made to the traditional area, so that the future generation can also count on it as what they benefited for the service their son rendered to the state.
“I am ashamed when I even tell people that I’m Attah Mills’ queen mother. This is because people always ask why we did not make the government do anything for us at Ekumfi, if I’m from that family. It is also shameful, because we were promised of something at Otuam, and the family secured a land for it, but nothing was done.
“Whenever we pour libation, we mention your (Akufo-Addo) name not to forget the promise you gave us the time you visited Ekumfi and told us he was a friend you played football with,” the queen mother reminded the President. President Akufo-Addo assured the family that he would honour his promise, but admitted he redirected his attention from Ekumfi because they voted out the NPP MP.
By Felix Anim Appau