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Here Comes Another Goofing Minister!

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It is amazing how some political appointees today seem to have the penchant for making public pronouncements.  While some of them probably talk just for media relevance, others do out of ignorance. But, whichever way it is, the end result is not pleasing.

For instance, last week, as the nation mourned the late Kofi Anan, former Secretary-General of the United Nations, Ms. Catherine Afeku, Minster for Tourism, Arts and Culture, was quoted in the media as saying that Busumuru’s death would boost Ghana’s Tourism Industry.

In the view of THE PUBLISHER, Madam Afeku’s statement is in bad taste, no matter how well she meant.

Asked if Mr. Annan’s demise would have any effect in the tourism industry, the minister reportedly answered in the affirmative insisting that people would travel from all over the world to see the global icon’s final resting place.

In our considered view, even if the loss of any individual could, in the long run, yield any dividend for the country, the timing and place of disclosing that ‘foreseen benefit’ is of prime importance. We think she had goofed big time.

In terms of sensitivity, we think her statement is not too different from an earlier one made in February this year by Mrs. Ursula Owusu-Ekuful, MP for Ablekuma West Constituency and Minister of Communications, to the effect that the death of Ghanaian artiste, Ebony Reigns, had cost her one parliamentary vote.

This is not the first time Hon. Afeku had goofed. In January, 2018, the same Tourism Minister for Tourism, Arts and Culture, Catherine Afeku blundered at a press conference and exposed her level of understanding of the Internet, when she claimed that social media wasn’t around in 2004. She had, as a matter of fact, wanted to talk about networks such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

This paper can catalogue several other ministers in this government whose comments and utterances were also not properly thought through.

In December 2017, Dominic Nitiwul said former President Mahama was occupying a residence on a military land, which later turned out to be inaccurate.

Then in April 2018, a Deputy Minister of information, Nana Ama Dokua Asiamah-Adjei, wrote on Facebook that Presidents Julius Maada Bio of Sierra Leone and Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya rigged the elections that brought them to power.

This incurred the wrath of supporters of the ruling Sierra Leone People’s Party (SLPP) and nearly generated a diplomatic row.

Also, on record is the statement made in August 2017 by the then Deputy Minister for Agriculture, William Quaitoo, that slighted people from the three northern regions. He paid the price for those ethnocentric comments by resigning.

A month earlier, in July 2017, deputy Minister of Trade, Robert Ahomka Lindsay, was forced to swallow his words after he virtually chided Ghanaians living abroad for excessively whining.

“Nobody likes whiners. People that spend all the time whining really get on people’s nerves. So stop whining all the time “, he told a gathering of Ghanaians in the diaspora.

In our opinion, political leaders must not necessarily comment on issues they are not sure of. It is not how many times you are seen in that media that determines your efficiency.

Wise men, they say, speak because they have something to say; others because they have to say something.

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