Ransford Yaw Gyampo, a professor at the University of Ghana, lashed out strongly at individuals who have criticized the former President of Ghana, John Dramani Mahama, for making a campaign promise to eliminate the practice of paying ex gratia if re-elected to the office of President of Ghana.
According to Professor Gyampo, Mr. Mahama ought to be commended for stating his intention to do away with this “unwarranted” payment rather than criticized.
At the beginning of his campaign, the former President made the promise that he would once again lead the National Democratic Congress (NDC) in the elections that will take place on Thursday, March 2.
“The payment of ex gratia to members of the executive will be scrapped,” Mr. Dramani Mahama announced when he launched his bid to be the 2024 presidential candidate at the University of Health and Allied Sciences (UHAS) in the Volta Region of Ghana. “The payment of ex gratia to members of the executive will be scrapped.”
In the year 2025, we will begin making the necessary amendments to the constitution in order to accomplish this. We will also work to convince members of the government’s legislative, executive, and judicial branches to consent to its removal.
Already, there has been an increase in the number of people demanding that the former president repay the ex gratia that he had previously received so that his promise can be taken seriously.
Those who are asking the former President to return his previous ex gratia were told by the founding director of the Center for European Studies at the University of Ghana that they “must raise the bar of their reasoning on this all-important matter of national interest.”
This was communicated by Professor Gyampo in a write-up that was distributed on March 8th.
In it, he lauded former President Mahama for expressing the “bold” resolve to end the payment to Article 71 office holders. He said this was a “bold” move.
“After benefiting from it in the past, I am sure [former] President Mahama has heard the criticisms that have been leveled against recipients, and he is now vowing to discontinue such an arrangement,” he wrote. “After enjoying it in the past, I am sure [former] President Mahama has heard the criticisms that have been leveled against recipients.”
“I am of the opinion that we should rather be applauding such a courageous resolve, which, in order to be implemented, would require significant constitutional hurdles to be scaled over,”
Later on, he stated, “I support every move that ensures that we do not pay pensions to appointees and some public office holders every four years.” He added this statement after it was brought to his attention.
“In order for me to be eligible for a pension as a teacher, I must wait until I am sixty years old and retire. At a time when we have allowed our resources to be pillaged, anyone who insists on being paid ex-gratia every four years, which is a form of pension, must be barred from working in public service. Ex-gratia payments are a form of retirement income.
“I believe that rather than being criticized, John Mahama ought to be commended for resurrecting this contentious issue of national rape of the public purse by some politicians.
Again, he deserves praise for making the commitment to put an end to this avaricious practice.