Hon. Capt. (retd) Nkrabeah Effah Darteh, one of the contenders for the flagbearership of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) has revealed what accounted for his dismissal as deputy Interior Minister.
According to him, President Kufuor fired him because he wanted to reduce the size of his government, not because he was inefficient and ineffective in his Ministry.
The President, he said, revoked his ministerial appointment, with an appeal to him to contribute toward en¬suring that the party won the 2008 general elections.
The President, he said, informed him about his removal from office at the instance of the Vice President, Alhaji Aliu Mahama, the Chief of Staff, Mr. Kwadwo Mpiani and Mr. Francis Poku, Minister of National Security among others.
Making these disclosures on a Kumasi local radio station, Fox FM, Hon. Darteh, MP for Berekum expressed regret that many Ghanaians thought President Kufuor removed him from office because he had rejected him.
On the radio station's programme dubbed Hardball, hosted by Captain Smart, the MP said when an employee was removed from his position or interdicted it did not necessarily mean that person had been demoted.
"I Nkrabeah Darteh on May 11, 2006 was called by President Kufour at the castle, in the presence of the Vice President, Alhaji Aliu Mahama, the Chief of Staff, Mr. Kwadwo Mpiani and Mr. Francis Poku of Natiotvl1 Security among others."
Rocking Kumasi to solicit for votes to prosecute his presidential ambitions, the former minister said "it was at that meeting that President Kufour urged me to step aside and support the party to win the 2008 elections."
Effah Darteh gave the assurance that when he is given the mandate as flagbearer of the NPP and subsequently wins the 2008 elections, he would continue with the good works of President Kufour.
He pledged to prioritise the decentralisation governance system of the country and take bold steps to improve the security system, particularly the Police Service, to enable personnel give of their best.
Effah Darteh lamented it was very unfortunate that the number of security personnel in the country was inadequate.
"I would ensure that the current population of the police shoots up so that every community gets more than enough of police personnel to protect the people in that community.”
He said the National Identification system being implemented by Government was a laudable idea which ought to be encouraged to succeed, to help the country's development planning.
"This I think could assist banks to give more loans to the citizens in the country. Banks currently find it difficult to give loans for fear of dealing with 'ghosts' who do not have proper identity," he said.
According to him, for any country to develop, much depended on the strength of private entrepreneurs, who depended mostly on bank loans for survival.
He said if banks became reluctant in granting loans it would also be difficult for the economy to develop.
According to Effah Darteh, areas like local government, unemployment, law and order and human development would be his top priorities.
Touching on decentralization, he said he would see to it that every sub-metro gets its own hospital, market, and shopping centres among others.