Politics

Akufo-Addo guilty of abuse of power despite condemning it in opposition – Arthur Kennedy

Dr. Arthur Kobina Kennedy, a physician, author and politician, has expressed concern at President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo’s governance style, highlighting a stark contrast between the rhetoric of then candidate Akufo-Addo and President Akufo-Addo.

Dr. Kennedy recalls that before ascending to the presidency, Akufo-Addo confided in him about his concerns regarding the excessive powers granted to the Executive by the constitution.

This, Akufo-Addo believed, made it challenging to hold a president accountable for their actions.
On the AM Show on JoyNews, Dr. Kennedy shared his past conversation with Akufo-Addo, where the then-candidate expressed a preference for the Prime Ministerial system over the Presidential system, citing the former’s provision for checks and balances among peers.

However, Dr. Kennedy now finds himself unable to reconcile the commendable views Akufo-Addo held before his election in 2016 with the actions of the man who has been president since 2017.

“The President once told me, ‘I don’t like the presidential system,’ and I said, ‘Why?’ and he said, ‘Because it gives too much power to one person’,” Dr. Kennedy who is also a leading member of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) recounted.

“He says, ‘In the Prime Ministerial system, you are only a first among equals, so your colleagues can rein you in when you get too dictatorial.’ That was very admirable, hearing that from him, and when you put that beside the person we are seeing as president now, it is very difficult for me to reconcile the two,” he continued.

Dr. Kennedy expressed dismay at how Akufo-Addo has seemingly embraced the very powers he once criticized, failing to uphold the constitutional principles and the sense of propriety he once championed.

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“I am stunned. You know, you would have expected that apart from everything else, you could rely on him to be a guardian of our constitutional principles—you know, respect for boundaries, sense of propriety, making sure the nation does not get harmed.

“Opportunity after opportunity, you get the impression that he just has not found it in him to do that, and it is sad watching that,” Dr. Kennedy lamented, reflecting on the president’s missed chances to be a guardian of Ghana’s constitutional values.

 

Source: Ghanaweb

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