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31.01.2006 Diaspora News

Wake-Up Call For Ambassador Marshall Mantey

By Kester Kenn Klomegah, Moscow.

Moscow -- The Ghanaian Community in Moscow has reacted positively to the recent appointment of new Ambassadors by President John Kuffuor. The Community leaders said the replacement especially for Moscow was necessary and asked the new Ambassador, Air Vice Marshall Edward Apau Mantey [rtd] to take immediate steps to address administrative deficiencies and mess that have been left in the mission by the former Ambassador Major-General Francis Mahama (rtd) over the three year period.

Major-General Mahama who came to diplomacy after several years of military service and should have used the opportunity to adopt a more interactive approach in his work and learn the basic ethics of diplomacy in order to properly represent the country. He should know by now that his three year diplomatic stint was full of colonial-style of a military bureaucracy.

During his Moscow tour, Major-General Mahama has down played the key issues raised in the speech by President Kuffuor when he handed over Letters of Commission and Credence to him in the Osu Castle, Accra.

There is an acceptable official rational behind serving as President Kuffuor's representative in any foreign country and always backed with motivation [an expensive apartment, a well equipped office, a flagged-flashy car, and an extraordinarily good salary] to enforce or pursue the important tasks for the Ghana Government, the growth of the economy and for the benefit of the population.

“That's why the appointing authorities must also periodically scrutinize their representatives' work,” the Community Spokesman said in remarks.

In an assessment, the Spokesman for the Community said Major-General Mahama did very little for Ghana during his time, all because he has inadequate knowledge of economic diplomacy and these concerns were also shared by a number of Russian businessmen whose proposals, which could have been tapped into, were overturned by the former Ambassador.

“We would encourage the new Ambassador to take advantage of opportunity offered him the President to promote through the media the image of the country and systematically study the political changes and emerging economic potentials in Russia and initiate ways of strengthening economic cooperation between the two countries.”

The Community Spokesman reechoed President Kufuor's statement and said since competitiveness had become the order of the day it was important Marshall Mantey vigorously pursued economic diplomacy and showcased the country in the best possible way so that the nation would attract the most returns.

The Community leaders, however, expressed great dissatisfaction about how the embassy is administered and approach to official matters and called for immediate staff reshuffling as a way of dealing with the persistent infighting, existing sharp differences and growing division, - the main distinguishing factors which are affecting the mission's work performance.

“Of course, there are a lot more questions to be answered, but it's about time the Foreign Ministry takes a critical look at the Moscow mission and how it operates. An immediate reshuffle would be a good attempt to break the stereotypes over there and to ensure a well functioning embassy that would, at least, serve its primary purpose for which it was established,” the Spokesman said.

“The newly appointed Ambassador has to work with entirely new staff. But if bot! h the Government and Foreign Ministry turn deaf ears to our proposals of carefully reevaluating the nature of staff relations and to embark on reshuffling, then it should wait for the negative consequences of an unprecedented magnitude,” he warned in conclusion.