If Not Political Vendetta, Then A Vindictive Revenge: Auditor-General V. President
Daniel Domelevo’s situation is similar to the successor’s dilemma of a designated CEO successor. The shareholders expect the designated successor to post impressive results, and the successor himself knows he must work hard to impress the shareholders.
But without support from the outgoing CEO and his team, how can he take charge? The successor’s hands are tied. If he pushes too hard, he alienates the outgoing CEO; if he doesn’t push hard enough, his performance won’t warrant a promotion to the top spot. Here in Ghana, no one pays the price of the successor’s dilemma quite like the successor himself. He must own the problem—and its solution.
While still reminding ourselves some bad side of political history, it is worth mentioning some of Dr Busia’s downfalls. Our current regime is bringing us back to some dark dates in our history which would not want to go there again. In June 1971, dismissing the rumours of a coup détal in Ghana, Dr Busia observed with arrogant contempt that “even if the government were to step down there would not be alternative men of calibre readily available to rule the country.”
The NPP people have boasted and continue to boast of their party filled with more intellectuals than any other party. Just on 26 June 2020, in accepting his nomination as NPP running mate, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia tagged members of the National Democratic Congress as people who do not read. “We have the men; we have the men” yet the NPP government has appointed 125 ministers and deputies for a population of less than 30 million.
Like Progress Party 50 years ago, the NPP government has not succeeded in lowering the cost of living, reducing mass unemployment - breaking the vicious circle of mass poverty in Ghana. Similar to Dr Busia, ministers and parliamentarians abused the privileges of office and manipulate the party patronage in a way that led accusations of “tribalism” and nepotism. Dr Busia took lots of measures to destroy Trade Union, suppressed the student union and discarded the military warnings about their condition of services.
Karl Marx wrote a book titled "History repeats itself, first as tragedy, then as farce" First, it is a tragedy no one had expected Oxford Professor to act that way. Then it is a farce (joke) because President Nana Akufo-Addo has not learnt from mistakes Dr Busia made. Some tragedies are terrible and unexpected, and if something has happened before, then we should be able to learn from the experience and prevent it from happening again.
Every law student or a historian knows about what happened 50 years ago in February 1970 when Dr Kofi Abrefa Busia’s government struck against civil servants by dismissing 568 without warning. This became known as “Apollo 568” where it appeared the dismissal was based on nepotism, party patronage and ethnic discrimination.
When E. K. Sallah, manager of GNTC successful appealed against his dismissal, Dr Busia accused the judges of playing politics. At the Parliament House, Dr Busia shouted ‘No Court, No Court, No Court’ and got choked. Had it not been his Minister of Finance, J.H. Mensah, who gave him water to drink, the Prime Minister Busia could have collapsed and died at the House Floor. President Akufo-Addo should not forget the Auditor-General, the Commissioner for Human Rights and Administrative Justice, and Electoral Commissioner are on equal footing.
Today, there are tussles between the Auditor-General and the President. The Auditor-General’s only crimes that meted out his treatment by the President are; his appointment was not done by the President; second, he has discovered various corruptions at the Presidency and working to expose them, including Senior Minister Yaw Osafo Marfo payment of $1m to Kroll & Associates; and third, his rejecting a request by the Chief of Staff for an audit verification to be conducted in order for the payment of salary arrears to be made to over 200 former and current MPs of NPP amounting to GHC29.7m. And while the case of Mr Osafo Marfo is at the apex court pending for a hearing, the President used his veto powers to direct the Auditor-General Daniel Domelevo to proceed on his accumulated leave of 123 days. In the first letter signed by the Secretary to the President, Mr Asante Bediatuo, he quoted that late President Prof. Evans Atta Mills did the same to then Auditor-General, Edward Duah-Agyeman. Is this not what we call "Political vendetta” or vindictive revenge?
Daniel Domelevo in his response claimed there is no such thing as accumulated leave, therefore he would only take his 44 days leave for 2020. His letter angered the President the more and in a 4-page letter, the President argued that the first accumulated leave was for 2017. 2018, and 2019. But since the Auditor-General has made mention of 2020 leave, he the President has added 44 days leave making a total accumulated leave of 167 days. The question here is that, is it justified, and how come a civilian government of this modern time playing bully? Prof Kwaku Asare (Kwaku Azar) has debunked the President’s letter on www.myjoyonline.com (Kwaku Azar: Letter seeking to exercise disciplinary control over Auditor-General has 5 problems).
How is possible to compare Daniel Domelevo to Edward Duah-Agyeman? Professor Edward Dua Agyeman (born on 22 November 1939) was appointed on 12 April 2001 as the Auditor-General by Ex-President Kufuor when he was already 62 years old (2 years older than the pension age).
Yet, he stayed on until 30 May 2010, (11 years above retirement age) when he was asked to proceed on his accumulated leave prior to his retirement at age of 70 years 8 months old. What crime did the late Prof Atta Mills commit and for that reasons ignorant people are equating this to NDC? Article 10 (4) of Audit Service Act, 2000 (Act 584) states “The Auditor-General shall retire after attaining the age of sixty years but may be engaged for a limited period of not more than two years at a time but not exceeding five years in all and upon such other terms and conditions as the President acting in consultation with the Council of State shall determine.
Is it the reasons why Prof Edward Duah Agyeman, the current Board Chairman of Audit Service is conspiring with President Nana Akufo-Addo to revenge or torment Mr Daniel Yao Domelevo’s life? If not greediness and mischievousness, why should the President keep an 81 years old man at that post?
Ever since President Akufo-Addo assumed office, he has blamed everything on President John Mahama or NDC. At least John Mahama acted with decorum and not misuse of the Office of the President. President Akufo-Addo acts like President Donald Trump, blaming everything on President Barrack Obama. Donald Trump even blamed the tidiness of the White House Bunker, he went to hide when the demonstrators were coming, on President Obama.
Lewis Kwame Addo
NDC Holland Chapter