A question from Owusu Banahene, a communication team member of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) that sought to question the credibility of President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo triggered a jab from a colleague on the other side, Nana Kwadwo Agyei Yeboah (Nana Kay), as the latter poked that the president is rather using money from the nation’s coffers for fula – a spice-infused millet dough balls which is served and eaten like a beverage – instead of paying contractors.
The two had appeared on UTV late-night news, Thursday, to battle it out and make a case for their respective flagbearers. In his submission, Banahene could not fathom why President Akufo-Addo would poohpooh John Dramani Maham’s intention to review the Free Senior High School policy and extend it to private schools.
He argued that the president once acknowledged and commended Mr. Mahama for introducing the progressive Free senior high school hence, baffles him as to why there will be doubts on his manifesto promise to extend the policy to the private sector.
He further argued that Mahama’s credibility is unparalleled unlike Akufo-Addo who continues to increase the public debt with his “continuous reckless borrowing”. He was puzzled why the Akufo-Addo government that claimed during the 2016 campaign that Ghana has more resources that could be utilized judiciously would resort to borrowing. What amuses him, he stated, is how the government has failed to pay contractors it engaged.
“As I speak to you, Association of Toilet Contractors say they have not been paid for the construction of over 700 toilet facilities after the government engaged their services. They were told they’d prefinance from 2017-2020. Till now, the government hasn’t paid them. So, all these monies that Akufo-Addo has borrowed, what is he using it for?” Banahene asked.
“He spends the money on fula,” said Nana Kay in a sharp rebuttal.
On October 1, 2020, a group of contractors calling itself New World Contractors Association of Ghana expressed disgruntlement over what they say is the government’s failure to pay them after they were contracted to build toilets in different parts of the country.
“Contractors were to pre-finance the project and after 60% completion, the amount involved shall be paid to the contractor. How can we be denied our money but for the government to claim credit for those projects?” the group said.
“We see this as a deliberate attempt by the Government and Ghana First Company to kill the spirit of contractors in this regard. Our members procured loans from banks to execute the projects. Now, we are being chased by those banks for repayment. Several appeals to Mr. Frank Akuley, the C.E.O. of the Ghana First Company Limited have fallen on death ears. He is blaming the government for the delays.”