Accra, March 24, GNA - President John Agyekum Kufuor on Thursday asked Deputy Ministers to handle issues of the State entrusted in their care with great circumspection and discretion.
"You have sworn an oath, therefore, when entrusted with matters of State handle them with great circumspection and discretion. Any negligence on your part will make you fall foul of the oaths you have taken," he said.
President Kufuor gave the advice when he administered the Oaths of Allegiance, Oath of Office and Oath of Secrecy and presented Instruments of Appointment to 16 Deputy Ministers made up of nine men and seven women at the Castle, Osu.
He said the Oaths they had taken had drifted them into the leadership team of governance in the country. Therefore, some basic attributes they should be imbued with were to show respect and allegiance to all Ministers, not only their sector Ministers. President Kufuor said the team formed by the Government had tenure of office and was expected to fulfil some objectives and promises in their manifesto.
He said it was the responsibility of the Government to lead the nation to achieve their promises and to deepen good governance and the ownership of governance to Ghanaians.
"Being part of the leadership team and to realise these lofty ideals the commitment expected from members of the team should be a high degree of discipline and dedication to the services of the nation to realise the needs of the people."
President Kufuor said: "We need to work together as a team. When you become self-centred you will be a misfit and cannot help us achieve our objectives and vision. We should, therefore, commit ourselves to be part of a good team."
He said the work ahead of them was sacrificial and urged them to remain focused in order that at the end of their tenure of office they could help make a difference in the country's Gross Domestic Product (GDP) now at 5.8 per cent growth rate. The GDP is expected to reach eight per cent growth rate, but the President said if the Government could obtain six per cent it would be an achievement.
"If at the end of our tenure of office there is peace, stability, armed robbery has abated, there is improvement in the provision of basic social amenities in the rural areas, we would make history in Ghana," he said.
President Kufuor reiterated that Civil Servants were to assist politicians realise their vision and objectives. Therefore, the onerous responsibility would be on the politician to perform efficiently and effectively for Ghanaians to commend them for good performance. He asked the Deputy Ministers not to be hypocritical but endeavour to be decent in their service to the country.
Miss Sophia Horner-Sam, Deputy Regional Minister for Western Region, on behalf of her colleagues, gave the assurance that the Deputy Ministers would put up a satisfactory performance that the President would not regret.
She said they were determined to discharge their duties creditably to contribute to the success of Government's policies and programmes for Positive Change Chapter Two.
The Deputy Ministers sworn in were: Dr Gyeshika Adombire Agambila, Deputy Minister of Science and Environment; Professor George Y. Gyan-Baffour, Deputy Minister of Finance and Economic Planning; Mr Kwame Ampofo Twumasi, Deputy Minister of Education and Sports and Mr Abraham Dwuma Odoom, Deputy Minister of Local Government and Rural Development.
The others were: Ms Rita Tani Iddi, Deputy Minister of Lands, Forestry and Mines; Dr B. Aggrey Ntim, Deputy Minister of Communications; Mr Christopher Addae, Deputy Minister of Harbours and Railways; Mrs Akosua Frema Osei-Opare, Deputy Minister of Manpower, Youth and Employment; Mrs Mercy Bampoe-Addo, Deputy Minister at the Office of the President; Ms Shirley Ayorkor Botchway, Deputy Minister of Information and Dr (Mrs) Gladys Norley Ashitey, Deputy Minister of Health.
Five Deputy Regional Ministers sworn into office were: Miss Susana A.A. Mensah for Eastern Region; Miss Sophia Horner-Sam for Western Region; Mr Ignatius Baffour Awuah for Brong Ahafo Region; Mr Mohammed Amin Adam for Northern Region and Mr A. Awudu Yeremiah for Upper East Region.
Vice President Aliu Mahama was among those present at the function.