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10.03.2009 General News

Kufuor releases BMWs, rejects Chryslers

By myjoyonline
Kufuor releases BMWs, rejects Chryslers

Former president Kufuor had declined the government's offer to replace three BMW vehicles with Chryslers.

He thanks president Mills for the offer but indicated he is not interested in the vehicles anymore.

Replying the letter from government asking for the return of the cars, Mr Kufuor also requested the government to come and take away the BMW vehicles which are a subject of huge controversy.

Confirming this to Joy FM's Super Morning Show host, Nortey Dua, spokesperson for Mr. Kufuor, Frank Agyekum, said his boss no longer needs the vehicles.

“President Kufuor is not that belligerent kind of person who is going to stand up for a vehicle and say that you want to take the vehicle I'm not going to allow you, no. I just gave my own interpretation of what I thought was happening and I just quoted the part of the constitution to say so but at the end of the day the president thinks that if the state want the vehicles let them come for them and turn down the Chryslers.”

Mr. Agyekum said the earlier argument that taking away the BMWs from Mr. Kufuor amounted to breaching the constitution was his own opinion.

He had argued that taking away the vehicles was varying the conditions of the former president to his disadvantage which was unconstitutional.

The discussion turned into banter when Dr. Tony Aidoo, a member of the transitional team, joined.

He questioned the rationale for the former president Kufuor to take away those vehicles and expect the new president to ask for them.

But his question did not sit well with Mr. Agyekum who interjected and asked why former president took away 17 cars when he left the presidency in 2001.

“We are not talking about Rawlings here, we are talking about Mr J. A. Kufuor,” Dr. Aidoo snapped.

“What I can say to you is that something cannot be good for one person and then be (wrong) for another person, we should follow a strict rule and be fair to all sides,” Mr. Agyekum responded.

He added that “this banter is not helping anybody, it doesn't help our discourse in any way at all.”

The former deputy Information Minister said six of the BMWs were bought and the president took away three.

He said what was being done was meant to denigrate Mr. Kufuor but added all machinations will fail.

Dr. Aidoo said the return of the vehicle will not necessarily close the matter as he will be interested in finding out why the cars were taken away in the first place.

Government issued an ultimatum to the former president to return the cars by close of day Monday, March 9, 2009 arguing the vehicles were bought specifically for the presidency and could not be kept by former president Kufuor.

The head of protocol at the presidency, Mr. Victor Smith said the National Security Co-ordinator had told him the former president was keeping the vehicles based on misinformation.

He said the official responsible for Mr. Kufuor's security when he was the president advised the former president to take away the vehicles which should rather have been left with national security.

He stressed the vehicles will be retrieved because Mr Kufuor is not supposed to use them as they were imported specifically for the security of the president.

But a legal practitioner, Mr. Ace Ankomah said that argument was untenable because the fact that the vehicles were meant for security does not mean the former president could not use them.

He said the brouhaha surrounding vehicles was a national disgrace and wondered why the leaders could not sit together and save the nation the shame.

“The mess is too much…we spend national time arguing about cars is a waste of everybody's time.”

Story by Malik Abass Daabu