The head of the Political Science Department of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology has painted a rather gloomy assessment of President John Mahama’s performance at Tuesday’s media interaction to mark his first anniversary in office.
Dr Amoako Baah said instead of the president tackling serious issues on economy and other challenges facing the country, he came to give “speeches” and “promises” without proffering any concrete solutions and plans to honouring them.
Under the theme: “One year of responsible transparent and accountable governance,” the president took time to address questions from journalists.
The questions touched on a wide range of national issues, including corruption, the controversial sale of Merchant Bank to Fortiz, the quality of government appointees, unemployment et cetera.
Discussing the interaction on Joy News, Dr Baah faulted the format of the interaction and also criticised journalists for not asking more direct questions, even though the questions touched on various pertinent issues.
He was even more disappointed with the responses from the president.
He said the media interaction and the president’s performance were nothing more than a “photo opportunity” for the president to present himself to the people of Ghana after taking some few days – Christmas holiday – break in Dubai.
He said the continued increase in taxes by government has worsened the living conditions of Ghanaians and there appears to be no better explanation from the president on how to assuage the suffering by the Ghanaians.
But in a reaction, a presidential staffer, Dr Kpessah Whyte said the interaction “went very well”.
He said the president cannot answer all the questions to the satisfaction of all Ghanaians, adding, sections of public will obviously disagree with the president on one issue or another.
He nonetheless welcomed the criticisms.
Dr Kpessah Whyte was disappointed with accusations of conflict of interest against the president in the controversial Merchant Bank sale to Fortiz, saying “it is so easy to run around and throw mud at people without evidence.”
Evidence is the rule of the game, he reiterated, insisting, if there is conflict of interest in the transaction, there has to be evidence.
He implored Ghanaians to be “fair to people we elect into office because when that same measure of throwing mud is applied to them they would not be happy.”