30 November 2012

Ghana: The GIPC Sin of Father and Sons

editorial

Even before the dust has settled on what is fast turning out to be a scandal, the main character in the drama believes that the dole-out of monies first to the Volunteers for Mahama, and later the Chairman of the Board of Directors, Mr. Ishmael Yamson, has the potential of damaging the fortunes of Chief Executive George Aboagye and the political party propping him up at the polls.

"Obviously, it is going to affect my campaign and maybe partly the results of the elections, but this is life. I have to work hard in order to make the electorate understand that the bottom line is that I have no sinister intention or whatever, that I have acted to the best of my conscience," Mr. George Aboagye, the man at the centre of what is threatening to be a big scandal at the nation's main link with international investor community, said on radio yesterday.

The Chronicle is in no doubt that a conscience that makes a parliamentary candidate dole out state money to those campaigning for his Presidential candidate cannot be a clear conscience. It is a conscience full of gerrymandering thoughts.

By approving GH¢ 4,000 to help market his Presidential Candidate, Mr. Aboagye was in full charge of what he was doing, which was to aid his leader gain an unfair advantage over all the other Presidential Candidates. The Chronicle would like to offer Mr. Aboagye free consultancy.

If he cares about his image and political future, he should announce his withdrawal from the Parliamentary race. He is going to be reminded about this scandal all the way to the polls on December 7. The Chronicle believes he is not the kind of material we need in our democratic evolution and would do well to stay out of the Parliamentary race.

While we are at it, The Chronicle would like to hear from Mr. Ishmael Yamson, the Board Chairman of the GIPC, on the statement by his former Chief Executive that GH¢ 9,000 out of the original GH¢ 20,000 cheque that was advanced by the GIPC towards his 70th birthday celebration.

It is strange that nearly twenty-four hours after Mr. Aboagye broke the news about the GH¢ 9,000 extravaganza on wines for the gargantuan birthday party, nothing has been heard from his former Board Chairman. If indeed, part of the money was retained by Mr. Yamson, then the people of Ghana have a right to demand an explanation from the one person, who has been an apostle of uprightness in the body politic.

The Chronicle is aware of the moral high ground taken by Mr. Yamson as Chairman of the University of Ghana Council, that led to the enforced departure of Prof. Kwadwo Assensor-Okyere, one-time Vice-Chancellor over a matter involving his son.

The son of the then Vice-Chancellor, a 23 year-old student of the university, was alleged to have been involved in examination malpractices. The University Council, then chaired by Mr. Yamson visited the sins of the son on the father. The former Vice-Chancellor was made to exit after his first term.

The GH¢ 9,000 sin involves the father and children.

Mr. Yamson told the world that when he discovered from his children that GH¢ 20,000 had been advanced by GIPC towards his 70th birthday, he returned the cheque.

The implication is that the entire GH¢ 20,000 had been returned. By courtesy of Mr. George Aboagye, we now know that at least GH¢ 9,000 of the amount went towards drinks for the old man's birthday bash.

This time round, the sin involved both the children and the father. We hope and pray that both the former Vice-Chancellor and the Chairman of the University Council now see the funny side of life. We are not done yet!

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