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07.12.2005 Press Review

Editorial : The Pending Reshuffle Is Timely

By Statesman
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WE endorse hints from the Castle that a reshuffle is in the offing. Indeed, the timing could not have been better. The President, the government, the party and the country can only welcome it.

President John Agyekum Kufuor should seek to foreclose what has clearly turned out to be his annus horribilis on a clear optimistic note. The new leadership that takes over the party, post-Esseku, will present such an opportunity of hope. But, beyond that the make-up of the government should also carry such a freshly positive impression.

The most tangible reason for this reshuffle, as disclosed to us by Castle sources, is to re-energise the administration, with the view to sharpen its delivery. As to getting rid of those the President considers to be peaking before time, we believe the President ought to proceed with extreme caution. If the truth be told, such a move could have a serious effect on even the ability of the government to deliver with experience. In various degrees the casualties, if that logic were stretched, could include the Vice President, the Defence Minister, the Energy Minister, the Education & Sports Minister, the Regional Cooperation & NEPAD Minister, the Trade & Industry Minister, the Foreign Minister, and the Water Resources, Works & Housing Minister. We would urge the NPP to take another look at the constitutional provision which demands all declared aspirants to resign from the government. We think that would not be helpful to a Cabinet where almost half of its strength have ambitions of presidential grandeur. A better provision would require only the winning candidate to resign from the government to pursue his/her campaign to win the nation for the party.

In terms of those who deserve to be maintained or dropped in the reshuffle we can only leave that to the presidential discretion. But, we believe the President should also bear in mind that he is the president because a party elected him to lead and must therefore not take our 'small' advice as an affront to his position. He shouldn't be surprised that some of us are more in touch with the people than his officials.

Some ministers have clearly failed to live up to the expectations of President Kufuor. Top on the list is the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice. His failure to implement the NRC compensation recommendations epitomises to some his failure as A-G.

A Local Government Minister, who promises to make the cities of Ghana the cleanest of the world by June 2006, deserves to share a flat with Mr and Mrs Nana Kwadwo Darko Busia.

What we expect is a team that can realise the goal to create employment and wealth. What we expect is a government that can influence what is news rather than one that is in constant defence mode. We leave it to the great wisdom of Mr President.