The vociferous Member of Parliament for Assin Central, Mr Kennedy Agyapong has questioned the declaration by the Executive Secretary of the National Identification Authority (NIA), that he was committed to building a formidable national identification system that is politically neutral.
“I have a very big problem” with what Professor Ken Attafuah has said in relation to this and finding jobs for the youth.”
In a radio interview with Angel FM, the NIA boss, Prof Ken Attafuah said he was focused on his mandate and would not be swayed by his detractors including party supporters.
He insisted that President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has charged him to ensure that no party executives are hired in the process at the National Identification Authority (NIA).
Speaking in the Twi language in the Angel FM interview, Prof Attafuah said President Akufo-Addo's vision is for him to build a neutral public service and so he [Attafuah] was doing what the law permits and in line with the President's legacy.
Ken Agyapong's reply
But in a radio interview Tuesday afternoon [June 8, 2021] monitored by Graphic Online on Accra based Asempa FM, Mr Agyapong said: “First of all, even if what he is saying is exactly what President Akufo-Addo charged him to do in a private conversation, do you think the Professor should come publicly to say this is what the President has charged him to do?”
I want to ask him, is his position as head of the NIA “politically neutral”?
“I have common sense to ask simple, simple questions for him [Attafuah] to look so ridiculous.”
Prof Attafuah’s grounds were that the public service in Ghana was neutral and therefore President Akufo-Addo has charged him to build a system devoid of political bias.
But the law maker, Mr Agyapong will not take that and insists Prof Attafuah's stance has the potential to demoralise the youth in the NPP, many of whom are looking for job opportunities and are of the conviction that after helping the party to attain political power, they ought to be sorted out with job opportunities.
Prof Attafuah's comment has elicited varied responses with some NPP members expressing anger about the comment.
Read also: What NIA boss Ken Attafuah said about NPP foot soldiers and building neutral public service
Buttressing his argument that Prof Attafuah's argument of political neutrality was baseless, Mr Agyapong said Prof Attafuah started the work at NIA during President John Kufuor’s era from 2001 to January 2009 but when the National Democratic Congress (NDC) administration came into office in 2009, he [Attafuah] was removed.
He said he was reinstated by the NPP in 2017 when the party regained power so where is the “political neutrality” that he is talking about.
He said he was aware that many of the youths in the NPP have charged against Prof Attafuah’s statement which is seeking to portray that President Akufo-Addo do not want them to be offered job opportunities.
Mr Agyapong said he was going to work to ensure that Prof Attafuah was removed and that they will be staging a series of demonstrations against Prof Attafuah.
"I know that man [President Akufo-Addo] will never say that" because he wants to place Ghana on a sound footing as well as ensure the well being of NPP members.
Mr Agyapong said he was aware someone else was to have gotten the job at NIA but it surprisingly went to Prof Attafuah only for him to turn against NPP members.
He said he has no problem if Prof Attafuah employ NDC members at NIA because they are all Ghanaians but he was of the conviction that party members who have contributed to the attainment of political power should be offered opportunities and that is how politics is done.
He demanded the resignation of Prof Attafuah over his "political neutrality" comment, which he said has the potential to "destroy" the party.
Already, we have problems and Prof Attafuah has added this comment to it to create more problems for the NPP, Mr Agyapong added.