31.05.2005 General News

Govt Undeterred By Smear Campaign

By Graphic
Govt Undeterred By Smear Campaign
LISTEN MAY 31, 2005

Accra, May 31, (Grpahic) --The Government Spokesperson on Governance, Mr Frank Agyekum, has stated that the government is undeterred by the smear campaign by its detractors.

According to him, the issue of the purchase of a hotel by President J. A. Kufuor's son is a private transaction which should be treated as such, because the government would not be drawn into it; rather it would focus on its development agenda.

Mr Agyekum was speaking to the press after a seminar on Whistle Blower and Freedom of Information bills organised in Accra by the Les Aspin Centre for Governance.

The seminar was part of a democracy capacity-building training programme for 18 people from Ghana, Nigeria and Mali.

Mr Agyekum said the Presidential Spokesman and the Chief of Staff had both offered enough explanation on the position of the President on the issue and wondered why people were calling on the President to personally comment on the issue.

He said as of now, Ms Gizelle Yajzi, the woman who alleged on some radio stations in the country that President Kufuor was the owner of the hotel and that by May 26, she would come out with audio tape recordings to prove her allegation, had not been able to do so.

He added that the son-in-law of Mr Anthony Saoud, the original owner of the hotel, Mr Hennric David Yeboah, has also explained that his father in-law was never prevailed upon to sell the hotel which was near the private residence of President Kufuor as it was being alleged.

Mr Agyekum said these and other false assertions that were being put in the public domain just to demean the President by the perpetrators of the story would come to naught.

Touching on the bills, he said they were currently with the Attorney-General and would be laid before Parliament before the end of the year.

He said the bills were part of the government's commitment to the tenets of freedom of speech as enshrined in the Constitution and the fight against corruption.

Mr Agyekum added that the government believed in the freedom of the media and would never do anything untoward to gag the media, and advised that such freedom must be exercised responsibly.

ModernGhana Links