You can’t pay salaries to First, Second Ladies using Articles 71, 108 – Mogtari

An aide to former President John Dramani Mahama who is also a private legal practitioner, Joyce Bawah Mogtari has said the government may have to introduce another bill to parliament if First and Second Ladies are to be paid salaries.

She said that payment of salaries to First and Second ladies in Ghana cannot be done under Articles 71 and 108.

“The list of Article 71 office holders is exhaustive. If they want to pay the spouses of the President and Vice President, it is very obvious that cannot be done under Articles 71 and 108.

“They should consider a new Bill,  Spouses of President Bill maybe,” she wrote in a tweet in reaction to the Parliamentary approval of a recommendation by committee Ntiamoah-Baidoo which was set up in June 2019 by President Akufo-Addo, to him and to Parliament on the salaries and allowances First or Second Spouses.

https://twitter.com/joyce_bawah/status/1412844763750060033?s=20

This has incurred the wrath of some members of the Ghanaian society who believe that this has come at a time the public purse is under severe pressure.

For instance Private legal practitioner Professor Kwaku Asare has said the five-member Ntiamoa-Baidu Committee that arrived at the decision which was approved by the House violated the 1992 Constitution,

Former President Mahama has also said there is no legal or constitutional basis for salary payment to First and Second Ladies in Ghana.

He said the spouses of the President and Vice President are not captured among Article 71 Office Holders.

Mr Mahama who was the Presidential Candidate of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) in last year’s elections said in a statement on Friday July 9 that “The news, particularly at this time of austerity, has generated some level of outrage among the populace, and I can understand the anger of those opposing the recommendation of the Ntiamoa-Baidu Committee and its subsequent approval by parliament.

“It should be made clear, also, that the recommendation in respect of spouses in the Ntiamoa-Baidu Committee report, which covers the years January 7, 2017 to January 6, 2021, is solely in respect of the Spouses of President Akufo-Addo and Vice President Bawumia.

“The challenge, however, is that the spouses of the President and Vice President are not captured among Article 71 Office Holders and, therefore, there is no legal or constitutional basis for it,” he said.

By Laud Nartey|3news.com|Ghana

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