Kweku Baako says Professor Attafuah did no wrong with his comment
He says Professor Attafuah was responding to some threats against him
But Professor Gyampo says Professor Attafuah should not have disclosed the conversation he had with the president
Kweku Baako, the editor-in-chief of the New Crusading newspaper has detailed the background story to Professor Ken Attafuah’s ‘political neutrality’ statement which has riled some members of the governing New Patriotic Party.
Speaking on Asaase Radio, Baako said that it is imperative that the comment by the Executive Director of the National Identification Authority is interrogated within the right context.
He revealed that Professor Attafuah was responding to calls and threats against him over the hiring of team leads for an ongoing NIA exercise.
“Have we asked ourselves what he was reacting to? The context within which he spoke? My research is that he was reacting to some threats that have been delivered to his office and his conduct in office by party footsoldiers who believe that he had not given them the chance. Indeed they sent some NIA officers to some regions and districts to do some work and the people are insisting that they want locals to be the team leaders. He was reacting to these agitations including threats. I have listened to some of those audios and he was reacting to it”.
Baako has no issues with persons who criticized the manner in which Professor Attafuah made the revelation of his conversation with President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo but asserts that what he said is not a departure from what the party captured in its 2020 election manifesto.
“In principle what he said … what is in the NPP manifesto and what promise did they make relative to building independent, efficient and competent state institutions. Did they make that clear? What is the difference between that and what he said? Because it is within the context of footsoldier agitation, I can see the difficulty party people have but I’m not a party man so I can speak clearly”.
On the same platform, Professor Ransford Gyampo said that Professor Attafuah ought to be commended for his decision to depoliticize the NIA.
“Our battle against poverty and underdevelopment has been fought and lost partly because, oftentimes, we have recruited square pegs into round holes in our appointments.
“Appointments over the years…have been driven by partisan considerations. I’ve had the opportunity to engage with appointees and you ask yourself so how did this person land this particular appointment or this job because they demonstrate quite a shallowness and lack of depth in their grasp over the issues. So some of us have always been saying that appointment to ministries, departments and agencies must always be driven by meritocracy.”
He said, “I was pleased to hear that Professor Attafuah said the president had given him those marching orders not be making appointments on partisan consideration. I thought it was something good that the president said. If for nothing at all, the president wants to leave a certain legacy.
“My position is that the president may have given those instructions to Attafuah, in my view, he should have just implemented these instructions on the quiet. But coming out publicly to make these pronouncements would also necessarily infuriate those through whose support you got your job. So that is how come he is suffering this kind of backlash. I think that he shouldn’t be made to apologise.”