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J. H. Mensah Dead! -Nana Addo, Bawumia, Rawlings, Eulogize Him

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The President Nana Akufo-Addo says the government is prepared to honour the memory of the late veteran politician and New Patriotic Party (NPP) stalwart Joseph Henry Mensah for his work.

He said the former minister deserves a good farewell.

The president who was addressing a gathering of family, members of government and the NPP described the news of his death as a sad one but said he was comforted that he (J.H. Mensah) was going to a place where he would no longer suffer.

He praised the late statesman’s contribution to the development of the country.

J.H. Mensah 89, as he was popularly known in the political circles passed at the 37 Military Hospital yesterday where he had been on admission for about a year for ill health.

Although details of his death have not been public, reports suggests he died from complications arising from a stroke he suffered last year.

News of his death has shocked the country especially politicians across the political divide as well as his close associates.

Tributes

Tributes continue to trickle in from persons from all walks of life.

Vice President Mahamudu Bawumia has eulogized the late J. H. Mensah, describing him as a humble and probably the best economist Ghana has produced.

Dr Bawumia also extended his condolences to the family of J. H. Mensah and his political allies.

“My sincerest condolences go to his family, Government, People of Ghana and the fraternity of the Danquah-Dombo-Busia tradition,” he wrote on his Facebook timeline.

Also eulogizing the former Senior Minister is the first President of the Fourth Republic, Jerry John Rawlings.

Mr. Rawlings wrote on Twitter yesterday that Mr Mensah “left an indelible mark on Ghana’s politics”.

“May his soul rest in peace,” he added.

“My sincere condolences to the NPP and the family of J.H. Mensah for their loss. He left an indelible mark on Ghana’s politics. May his soul rest in peace.”

MPs

Some Members of Parliament (MP) have also been paying tribute to the late statesman.

Tamale Central MP, Inusah Fuseini described him as a consummate politician.

“He understood, on a personal level, the problems confronting this country and sought as a person to contribute his quota towards the upliftment of the country.

“We saw it in every contribution he made on the floor of the house. Most of us, even though from different political divides sought to take inspiration from him,” he added.

Pru MP Dr Kwabena Donkor said an intellectual awakening is needed for the transformation of the country and that will be the greatest tribute to the greatest tribute to him is achieved.

“As a people, we have been intellectually lazy and I think J.H will sleep peacefully if we wake up from our intellectual slumber as a people and focus our intellectual capital on national development.”

Sunrise

  1. H Mensah, a Gold Coaster born in October 1928 is a founding member of the NPP and served in three different ministerial positions under the John Agyekum Kufuor administration.

He was a former Minority leader and a Majority leader and held his last top government position in 2005 when he was appointed Senior Minister by former President Kufuor.

His working experience dates back to 1953 when he was appointed as an Assistant Inspector of Taxes by the colonial administration.

The Senior Minister of Government Business also worked as a Research Fellow in Economics at the University of Ghana between 1954 and 1958.

He joined the United Nations Secretariat in 1958 as an Economic Affairs Officer at the Centre for Development Planning, Projections and Policies, in New York.

In 1961, Mr. Mensah was the Head of Agency at the National Planning commission of the Government of Ghana, which drew and implemented the country’s Seven-Year Development Plan (1962 ­ 1969).

During the Progress Party (PP) administration (1969-1972), he was the Minister of Finance and Economic Planning as well as a Member of Parliament (MP).

Int’l Stints

Between 1974 and now, Mr. Mensah has worked in different capacities both at home and aboard. These include Chairman and Managing Director, Development and Managing Director, Development and Management Consultants (Ghana) Ltd; Chairman, Sunyani District Council (1978-1981), and Proprietor of Banka Farms Limited.

Mr. Mensah served as a member of the African Advisory Council of the African Development Bank (ADB) between 1993 and 1997.

In 1996, he contested the Sunyani East seat on the ticket of the New Patriotic Party and won in the Parliamentary elections in December 1996 to become an MP. He retained the seat in the 2000 polls.

He was the Minority Leader in Parliament during the Second Parliament of the Fourth Republic.

By: Jeffrey De-Graft Johnson

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