As Head of State, one of the most pressing things that Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo is pressured with now is the need or not to sack or reshuffle his ministers.
To a large extent, many people feel he has not done enough in that regard but in this GhanaWeb article, we bring you a list that may well provide some closure to whether or not the president has been bold enough to sack, as is required.
And since his is the most recent, this list will start with the outgone Commissioner of the Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), Col. Kwadwo Damoah.
Customs boss, Col. Damoah fired:
After weeks of back-to-back media engagements by the former Commissioner of Customs, Col. Damoah, over an investigation being undertaken by the Office of the Special Prosecutor into acts of corruption that may have happened in his office, the axe fell on his head.
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, on Monday, August 29, 2022, asked the Commissioner of the Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), Colonel Kwadwo Damoah (rtd), to hand over his duties to the acting deputy commissioner.
In a letter signed by the Secretary to the President, Nana Bediatuo Asante, the notice of handing over was due to the expiration of his contract on October 13, 2021.
“Following the expiration of your contract of service as Commissioner (Customs Division) of the Ghana Revenue Authority on 13th October 2021, the President of the Republic has directed that effective Friday, 26th August, 2022, you hand over your duties and office to the acting Deputy Commissioner (Preventive Service), Mr. Siedu Iddrisu Iddisah, who will act as the Commissioner (Customs Division) pending the President’s substantive appointment.
“The President thanks you for your service to the State and wishes you well in your future endeavours,” the statement read.
A finding from the Office of the Special Prosecutor dated August 3, 2022, and titled: “Report of Investigation into Alleged Commission of Corruption and Corruption Related Offences involving Labianca Group of Companies and the Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority” indicated among other things that the frozen foods company owner used her position to evade taxes.
Initially, while reacting to the report, the customs boss said any attempts by the Special Prosecutor to bring him down will not work.
Former Gender Minister, Sarah Adwoa Safo:
In the case of the Member of Parliament for Dome Kwabenya, Sarah Adwoa Safo, her sack was one that was long-expected. For many, it was even long overdue by the time President Akufo-Addo made the decision on Thursday, July 28, 2022.
According to a statement signed by Eugene Arhin, Director of Communications, Office of the President, the President’s decision to sack her as Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection was according to Article 81(a) of the 1992 Constitution.
The statement added that Cecilia Abena Dapaah, Minister for Sanitation and Water Resources, would continue as the caretaker minister until a substantive minister was appointed.
“In accordance with article 81(a) of the Constitution, the President of the Republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has revoked the appointment of Hon. Sarah Adwoa Safo, Member of Parliament for Dome Kwabenya, as Minister for Gender, Children and Social Protection, with immediate effect.
“The Minister for Sanitation and Water Resources, Madam Cecilia Abena Dapaah, will continue to act as caretaker Minister for the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection, until such a time that President Akufo-Addo appoints a substantive Minister,” the statement from the Presidency concluded.
Former Minister of Energy, Boakye Agyarko:
A letter dated August 6, 2018, and signed by Eugene Arhin, gave then-Minister of Energy, Boakye Agyarko, his sacking.
The sacking took immediate effect.
The letter from the Presidency said the president had directed Agyarko to hand over to the Lands and Natural Resources minister as the time, John Peter Amewu.
Boakye Agyarko’s dismissal came after President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo was allegedly misled into approving the AMERI deal, which had been rejected by parliament through an Executive Order.
The novation and amendment agreement was seeking to buy out the deal Ameri Energy had with the government of Ghana under President John Dramani Mahama and handed over to a third party, Mytilineos, for 15 years. Ghana would have ended up paying over GH¢1 billion under the new arrangement.
The joint committee on Finance and Energy of Parliament rejected the new deal because it had no signatures from the Attorney General and Finance minister.
After his dismissal, the once blossoming relationship between the two was marred, as confirmed by Boakye Agyarko in a June 20, 2022, interview.
In the interview, he stated that he currently doesn’t have a relationship with President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo following the circumstances under which he was relieved of his position in August 2018.
Agyarko was the Campaign Manager for President Akufo-Addo in the 2016 elections, at a time the New Patriotic Party (NPP) was seeking to oust the NDC from power.
Former GACL boss, Yaw Kwakwa:
On February 9, 2022, President Akufo-Addo sacked then Ghana Airports Company Limited (GACL) boss, Yaw Kwakwa.
A letter signed by the Minister of Transport, Kwaku Ofori Asiamah, said, “His Excellency the President, per letter No. 0P S127/22/104, dated 31st January 2022, has directed the appointment of Mr. Yaw Kwakwa as Managing Director of the Ghana Airport’s Company Limited be terminated.”
The letter did not state the reasons for his sack.
Former MCE for Akuapem North and Amansie South, Dennis Miracle Aboagye, and William Bediako:
Together with the District Chief Executive (DCE) for the Amansie South District in the Ashanti Region, William Asante Bediako, Dennis Miracle Aboagye, was sacked as Municipal Chief Executive for Akuapem North.
“In view of the above, the Hon. Regional Ministers for Western, Eastern and Ashanti regions are requested to liaise with the Regional Electoral Commission to conduct the confirmation process of the nominated Chief Executives,” the statement signed by Hajia Mahama indicated.
It is not clear what triggered the dismissals, however, in the case of William Asante Bediako, he grabbed headlines for defending persons engaged in illegal mining activities in the Amansie South District.
Bediako was captured in a viral video stating his disagreement with the state-sponsored clampdown on illegal mining.
“Why would I not support ‘galamsey’? Had it not been for ‘galamsey’, we would not have had a storey building at Manso; had it not been ‘galamsey’ and hardworking nature of the people of Manso, a young person from Manso would not have been able to purchase a car worth one billion Cedis,” he was heard saying in the tape.
Former PPA boss, Adjenim Boateng Adjei:
In a letter dated Friday, October 30, 2020, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo terminated the appointment of Adjenim Boateng Adjei as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Public Procurement Authority (PPA).
The termination of Adjenim Boateng Adjei’s appointment came after a report by the Commissioner of the Commission for Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) to President Akufo-Addo discovered a conflict of interest against him.
An investigative piece titled, ‘Contracts for Sale,’ by investigative journalist, Manasseh Azure Awuni, revealed some contracts authorized by the Authority to a company alleged to be owned by the PPA boss.
This led to the suspension of Boateng Adjei after the Office of the Special Prosecutor and CHRAJ were tasked to look into the matter.
The findings of the Commissioner of CHRAJ, Joseph Whittal, concluded: “on the totality of the evidence, Mr. Adjenim Boateng Adjei had put himself in a position where his personal interests conflicted with the performance of his functions as CEO and Board Member of the PPA.”
In the sack letter signed by the Director of Communications at the Presidency, Eugene Arhin, it stated in part that, “Having satisfied himself of the fact that the recommendation made by CHRAJ is properly motivated and well-founded, the President has expressed his appreciation and gratitude to Mr. Joseph Whittal and CHRAJ for the thorough and methodical manner in which the matter has been addressed.”
The termination of Adjenim Adjei’s appointment meant that for the next five years from that time, he would not qualify to hold any public office.
Former Deputy Minister of Communications, Vincent Odotei Sowah:
Without stating the reasons for this decision, a former Deputy Minister of Communications, Vincent Odotei Sowah, was sacked.
In his place, the president, through a letter, re-assigned the Deputy Health Minister, Alexander Kodwo Kom Abban, to the Communications Ministry.
Abban was then replaced at the Ministry of Health by Dr Bernard Oko-Boye.
Reacting to his sacking, Vincent Odotei Sowah said in an interview that he was neither incompetent nor corrupt during his time in office.
“The President has a prerogative to hire and fire. I am not incompetent, and I am not corrupt. I will be forever grateful to him for the opportunity to serve for some time. The President called to tell me I had been relieved of my position. I would rather not discuss why I was relieved,” he said.