Hannah Tetteh Advises Alban Bagbin



hannah_tetteh_2The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hannah Tetteh, has advised former Majority Leader, Alban Bagbin, to apply the same zeal, with which he is publicly criticising the President, to doing his job, as one of the “wise men”.

The former Health Minister is a member of the President’s task force (wise men) on government’s priority projects.

He has, in separate no-holds-barred interviews with the media, wondered why the President has become inaccessible to him.

Mr. Bagbin claimed all his attempts to offer the President private counsel on how to tackle corruption in his government, had hit the rocks.

Ms. Tetteh however points out on her facebook status update that: “focusing all our attention and giving the excuses of the inability to do one thing or the other on our inability to consult the President at Flagstaff House or discussing the action to be taken without his input creates the impression we are waiting for the President to do something or instruct someone before anything can happen”.

She wrote: “To my brother Alban Bagbin, that means criticising the President in public makes sensational headlines, and perhaps the main topic of discussion for the week, but if you put that zeal into the supervision and oversight of the projects given to you and the other “wise men” to oversee, and deliver on time, on budget and maintain standards and quality, you would be doing something that would be in the headlines for all the best reasons for a long time to come”.

The Foreign Minister, who is currently in South Africa for the third Permanent Joint Commission for Cooperation Meeting between Ghana and that country said: “When any government is elected into office and individuals are assigned specific responsibilities whether by election or appointment, then my view is that each individual elected official/appointee has a responsibility to do the job they have been appointed/elected to do”.

According to her, “that point of view suggests that there is no room for initiative on the part of government officials”.
She added that, “the whole concept of delegated responsibility recognises that one person can’t do everything and other persons must also share the workload”.

“When we suggest otherwise and hold the President responsible for every other action, [it] suggests members of the team can absolve themselves of their own inaction,” Hannah Tetteh argued.

“I am of the view that that perception of governance is wrong. In a decentralised democracy the objective must be to create leaders at every level of government, and for that matter there must be alternative positions/ideas whether from an “opposition”, or civil society organisation, or other persons/interests who also have different viewpoints engaging at all levels of government to scrutinise and test what is being suggested or implemented”, she wrote.

In other words,  Ms. Tetteh noted, “those participating in government from the position of a unit committee member, assemblyman, District Chief Executive, MPs, other chief executives and the management of organisations and institutions as well as ministers must assume their responsibilities, and must be contested on the basis of issues and actions”.

She said President Mahama “is important as the Leader of the country and those who work with him at the presidency have a role to play in helping him to execute the functions for which he is solely mandated to act or chooses to exercise direct oversight”.

“However, at the same time every appointee or elected official has responsibilities of his/her own and even though we all work to the President each person must do their best to meet those responsibilities,” Ms Tetteh added.

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