Approval of Presidential spouse’s salaries: NDC to challenge Parliament in court
The Youth Wing of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) has hinted at challenging Parliament’s approval of salaries for the First and Second Ladies in the Supreme Court.
“The Youth Wing will in the coming days invoke the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court to declare this cancerous and insensitive act unconstitutional”, the party stated in a press statement signed by the National Youth Organiser of the party George Opare Addo on Wednesday, July 7, 2021.
According to the group, “The Constitution never clothed the Emolument Committee any power to introduce any category of persons to benefit from the Consolidated fund without due regard to article 108.”
The party was of the view that the Committee erred in making such a recommendation. “The bully approval process by the NPP majority in the last Parliament and subsequent acquiescence of President Akufo-Addo of the recommendation is an unjustifiable assault on the Constitution, which must not go unchallenged”.
Meanwhile, Information Minister, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, has explained that the payment of allowances to spouses of Presidents and Vice Presidents is not a new phenomenon.
According to him, the allowance payments were instituted under the Kufuor administration but were only being formalised by the current government.
“President Kufuor, in his wisdom, instituted this because of the bad situations of some spouses of some former heads of states then. President Mills and Mahama even increased the rates of these benefits during their time.”
This issue is gradually dominating discussions in the country following claims that President Akufo-Addo had given approval for his wife, Mrs. Rebecca Akufo-Addo, and the wife of Dr. Bawumia, Mrs. Samira Bawumia to receive the same salaries as Cabinet ministers.
Oppong Nkrumah told Daily Graphic that those claims were misleading.
“The President does not approve salaries and benefits for the Executive. Under Article 71, the First Lady and Second Lady are not office-holders, so no one can determine their benefits under that article.”
“However, a committee [on emoluments] only recommended that an arrangement for the spouses be made formal and that received approval from Parliament,” he indicated.
Read the statement below: