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Ghanaian are legally placing the First and Second Lady under Article 71 by going beyond frameworks of criticism – Prof Agyeman-Duah

Former UN advisor, Prof. Baffour Agyemang-Duah has descended heavily on critics of the First and Second Ladies over the recent brouhaha on allowances given to them by the state.

He said those critics, and Ghanaians, should not underestimate the work that the spouses of the President and his Vice do.

Citing the likes of Nana Konadu Agyeman-Rawlings and her 31st December Movement, he said the First Ladies put in tremendous work to contribute to the development of the country.

”If you come to the present First Lady, Madam Rebecca Akufo-Addo, certainly we can quickly recall her work in Kumasi putting up a maternity building in a matter of a year and many other tremendous things that she is doing,” he citied in an interview on Monday, July 13 on TV3.

For him, the work of the presidential spouses should be looked at independent of their husbands.

Ghana’s First Lady, Rebecca Akufo-Addo and the Second Lady, Samira Bawumia, after public debate about allowances they receive from the state, decided to refund all the monies paid to them since 2017.

The debate on the issue was stirred by a recommendation by a committee which was which was tasked by president Akufo-Addo to review the emoluments of Article 71 office holders.

The committee led by Prof. Yaa Ntiamoa-Baidu recommended that the spouses of the President and his Vice should be given monthly salaries equivalent to some ministers.

‘Divisive Politics’

”I think these under pressure have decided to give up these allowances.

”In a way, i think we have not been fair to the First and Second Ladies in terms of going beyond the framework of criticism, which is legality of placing them under Article 71, for others to come for some kind of vicious attacks on these innocent ladies,” he said.

He added, ”That is itself is not good. I think we would have to be a little bit reflective when it comes to these critical issues.”

He also attributed the rancour to the ”divisive” politics in the country ”which tends to turn everything into politics”.

”That has been our problem and i think we have to find a better way of managing this particular issue.”

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