KT Hammond, Boadu, Others Penciled For ‘Injury Time’ Substitution
The Anchor is picking up some interesting names for possible ministerial appointments to replace the old guards in President Akufo-Addo’syet-to-be announced major reshuffle of his government, barely two years to the end of his administration.
Insiders told this paper that the shake-up will affect a number of long-standing appointees,in-charge of ministries, such as Health, Defence, Energy andInterior,as well asFood and AgricultureandTrade and Industry, which are currently vacant.
The President, The Anchorgathered, will be travelling to Dubai in a short while, during which the reshuffle list will be released.
The long-awaited reshuffle will be coming on the back of two major resignations by two cabinet ministers, namely Alan John Kyeremanten of the Trade and Industry ministry and Dr. Owusu Afriyie Akoto of the Food and Agriculture ministry.
The two are among a dozen of New Patriotic Party (NPP) bigwigs, intending to contest in the party’s presidential primaries later this year.
But even before the list could be made public, sources within the corridors of power have hinted The Anchor, that the President has penciled down names, like Mr. John Boadu, former General Secretary; Mr. K.T. Hammond, Adansi Asokwa MP; Bryan Acheampong, Dr. Stephen Amoah, aformer CEO of MASLOC, and others, as substitutes to play in what appears to be “injury time” of his administration.
John Boadu, whose quest to retain his position was dashed last year, is anticipated to make his debut as a Minister of State since his political journey.
The former top scribe of the governing party is allegedly set to replace Dr. Afriyie Akoto at the Food and Agriculture ministry.
Another interesting name making the rounds for possible reappointment is the former Minister of State for National Security, Bryan Acheampong.
Earlier accounts had it that Mr. Acheaampong, who is also the Abetifi MP,was going to head the Food and Agriculture ministry, but fresh sources say he may likely be sent to another ministry.
Mr. Acheampong, together with K.T. Hammond,is allegedly being rewarded for their immense roles in ensuring that the Finance Minister, who was targeted for removal, was defended to retain his position.
Mr. Hammond, for instance, it would be recalled, was the co-chair of the ad hoc committee set up by the Speaker of Parliament to investigate whether or not the finance minister deserved to be censured by MPs.
Interestingly, Ken Ofori-Atta, according to this paper’s sources, is going to remain at his post, despite several attempts, including ones from some majority members in Parliament, to have him removed.
Also, featuring prominently on the list is another big name whose inclusion in this “injury time” of the government is long-time parliamentarian KobinaTahiru Hammond, popularly referred to as KT Hammond.
The AdansiAsokwa constituency MP, for the past six years, has been ignored by the President, despite his vast experience in the august House and governance, having served as Deputy Minister under ex-President John Agyekum Kufuor.
It is unclear why such has been the case, but this paper is reliably informed that the often-jovial politician is being considered for a very important portfolio.
The veteran lawmaker has been penciled down for the Energy Ministry as the substantive minister.
There are however claims that Mr. Hammond, who has been peeved for all these years, is dragging his feet in accepting the appointment, having been snubbed by the President over the past six years.
According to sources, a lot of engagements are still ongoing to have him come into government for the remaining two years. In the likely event that he agrees, KT will be going back to his former ministry as the substantive minister.
The Energy Ministry is currently headed by Dr. Matthew Opoku Prempeh, aka Napo. But in the case of the Manhyia South MP, it is alleged that he would be reassigned to the vacant Trade and Industry ministry, even though there are claims he is not the least enthused about his imminent movement.
Currently, the Lands and Natural Resources minister, Samuel Abu Jinapor, has been appointed as the caretaker minister of that ministry.
If Napo is moved, it will be the third time the dentist-turned-politician will be heading a ministry over the past six years. During the first term of the President, Dr. Opoku Prempeh held the post of Education Minister for four years.
He was however reassigned to the Energy Ministry in the beginning of the second term of the President, where he appears to be very comfortable.
Also on the list is the MP for the Nhyiaeso constituency in the Ashanti Region, Dr. Stephen Amoah, who will for the first time be appointed as a minister.
The outspoken first-time lawmaker, who has finance background, will be heading to the Finance ministry as a minister of state.
He will be replacing the sacked minister, Charles Adu Boahen, who was relieved of his post last year, after he was caught in a video indulging in what some have described as corrupt practices.
Sticka, as he is affectionately called, the MP, who has been speaking on the economy even outside of government, will be expected to bring his expertise to bear to assist the government at a time it is seeking a loan agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
Sources say it will be a dream-come-true for the former Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Microfinance and Small Loan Centre (MASLOC), who has allegedly also been unhappy with his exclusion from government after becoming a parliamentarian.
Meanwhile, it is unclear if the likes of the former Deputy General Secretary of the NPP, Nana Obiri Boahen, will be added to the list of new appointees.
ObiriBoahen, who is a former Bono Regional chairman of the NPP, according to him, has been denied appointment into government since 2017.
The Sunyani-based legal practitioner, who has declared his support for Vice President MahamuduBawumia to be the next flagbearer of the NPP, is on record to have lamented about his exclusion from government.
In a recent interview on Okay FM, Nana Obiri Boahen said he has not been given even a public toilet to manage.
He was quoted as saying “I was not given even a public toilet to manage.
“They could have asked me to manage all the public toilets in Sunyani, but nothing like that happened. God will handle my case for me.
“Sometimes, you meet people and they ask if you are under some spell because they do not understand why I was not assigned any role.”
He continued, “I had a conversation with someone about Adomako Baafi’s rejection of the National Lottery Authority over religious grounds. The person sought to know if I was offered any such role and I told him never. No one called or offered me any position. Even assemblyman appointment, I was overlooked.”
He added, “After the 2020 elections, a list from the Bono Region was submitted. The same was done in 2017 but I wasn’t considered. After every election, regional chairmen are made to send list of potential appointees, but I wasn’t looked at. It shouldn’t sound like I’m peeved because I was denied a role. God’s time is the best.”