by Stephen Kwabena Effah

March 17, 2017

The 110 Ministers -The bloated facts

Some have called it ‘bloated,’ others, ‘ineffective,’ some ‘senseless act’ and even some have tried to turn the popular phrase ‘incompetence’ back to the NPP. Why? For the fact that President Akufo-Addo has appointed 110 ministers and deputies.

The argument has been tensed and skewed laced with insults and denigration. The NDC has taken a field day of the situation and are seriously exploiting it; some academicians are not happy and have come hard on the government, some think-tanks are up on the beat and even some NPP members are not happy with the development.

In all these, people have argued from the legal point quoting Article 78 (2) of the Constitution extensively. Once the legal thing has been taken up, I want to argue from another point. Though the number looks big, the arguments have not been so factual. Possibly, these facts have been bloated.

Bloated Fact Number One – ‘Elephant-sized’ Ministers

This is not the first time and probably will never be the first time appointment of government ministers is bloated. Since the overthrow of Kwame Nkrumah who according to records, ended his term with about 41 ministers, no democratically elected government has stayed within that and the numbers keeps on increasing every now and then. So bloating of ministers didn’t start in Nana Addo’s time. Trust me, we may get to a point when a government may be bigger than this unless there is an amendment to the Constitution.

Bloated Fact Number Two – Damage to Public Purse

Nana Addo knew what he was about when he submitted a budget which indicated that though we shall rake in some GH¢44 billion, we shall spend some GH¢58 billion creating a deficit of some GH¢13 billion. Before coming out with these figures, the government had taken into consideration the fact that 110 ministers would be in office for take-off and all that was necessary to be done had been taken into consideration, hence for those who argue that, it will be a waste on the public purse, maybe they should turn back and look at the budget. Until the budget has not catered for these, then we can agree with them on that score.

Bloated Fact Number Three – Effectiveness vs Efficiency

Ghanaians gave Nana Addo a resounding victory based on promises made and which is now become a social contract between the two. The man believes he can achieve effectiveness with the numbers. And let us not confuse effectiveness with efficiency.  Effectiveness is doing things which get you closer to your objectives and Efficiency is performing a given task in most economical manner. Leadership training will tell you being Efficient without Effectiveness is busyness. So Nana Addo believes what he can do is more important than how he does it. So let’s allow him to do the right thing.

The Fact – Early Days Yet

Come January or February next year, the President will be in Parliament to tell Ghanaians how he has been able to achieve his vision and/or how far his direction for the achievement of the vision for the nation for which he brought in 110 ministers is; there and then, we all will applaud and/or criticize.

The Fact – Wake Up Call

This becomes a wake-up call for anybody who finds himself in Nana Addo’s 110 to understand that, out of over 25 million qualified Ghanaians, you were chosen and Ghanaians demand nothing less than effectiveness.

Advice to Hamid

The Minister of Information seems to be getting a bit angry weary. His recent interviews on the subject seem to suggest that some media personnel are trying to ‘fan’ some unforeseen ‘flames.’ Honourable Mustapha, take heart for more than these will come up. In fact, you might not have met your first interviewer whose questions from A-Z are nothing but either ‘stupid’ or near ‘stupidity’

By Kwame Apau|Ag. Executive Director of PIPA| A Communications Expert and Lecturer

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