Gyampo: Ghanaian Presidents’ High Salaries Should Ensure Adequate Support for Their Wives

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Professor Gyampo suggests Ghanaian presidents receive generous salaries and should adequately support their wives. Explore the discourse on presidential perks.

University of Ghana Professor Ransford Gyampo argues against the notion of paying salaries to the spouses of Ghanaian presidents and vice presidents. He contends that since the president and vice president receive adequate compensation from the state, they should be responsible for supporting their wives without additional salary considerations. Gyampo firmly opposes entertaining the idea of providing salaries to presidential and vice presidential spouses.

“They have been paid enough and they have more than enough to take care of their wives, if you are a president and you cannot take care of your wife you are not worth your sort. if you are a vice president and you can’t take care of your wife you are not worth your sort,” he said on the Key Points on TV3 on Saturday, April 27.

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He stressed “The president is super paid well to be able to take care of his wife, we should not always be looking for avenues to dissipate the public purse. I don’t agree to any idea of regularizing payment of salaries to their wives. To that end, the Judgment of the Supreme Court is in order.”

The Supreme Court has declared unconstitutional the payment of salaries to the First and Second Ladies of Ghana. This ruling came after a lawsuit filed by the Bono Regional Chairman of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Mr. Kwame Baffoe, also known as ‘Abronye’, challenging the approval of salaries for the First and Second Ladies. President Akufo-Addo established a five-member committee, led by Prof Ntiamoa-Baidu in June 2019, tasked with recommending salaries, allowances, and privileges for Article 71 officeholders to both the President and Parliament.

Chief Justice Gertrude Torkornoo, heading a 7-member panel of Judges, dismissed all but one of the requests made by South Dayi Member of Parliament, Rockson-Nelson Dafeamekpor, in a lawsuit resembling that of ‘Abronye’.

The court determined that Rockson-Nelson Dafeamekpor’s case centered on the recommendations of the committee, whereas Abronye’s case focused on the actions of Parliament. Additionally, the court rejected the fourth request made by Kwame Baffoe, the NPP Bono Regional Chairman. Below are the reliefs sought by Rockson-Nelson Dafeamekpor, which were dismissed by the Supreme Court:

1. A declaration that upon a true and proper interpretation of Article 71(1) of the 1992 Constitution of Ghana, the Prof. Ntiamoah-Badu Committee appointed by the president of the Republic of Ghana under Article 71(1), only had jurisdiction to make recommendations in respect of salaries, allowances payable, facilities and privileges of Article 71 office holders under the Constitution.

2. A further declaration that upon a true and proper interpretation of Article 71(1) of the 1992 Constitution of Ghana, the Prof Ntiamoah-Badu Committee had no jurisdiction, mandate or authority to make any recommendations in respect of salaries, allowances payable, facilities and privileges of persons other than persons specified under Article 71 of the Constitution.

3. A declaration that upon a true and proper interpretation of Article 71(1) of the 1992 Constitution, the Prof Ntiamoah-Badu Committee exceeded its jurisdiction, mandate and authority when it purported to make recommendations in respect of privileges, facilities, salaries and allowances payable to the 1st and 2nd ladies of Ghana.

4. A further declaration that the recommendations of the Committee, to the extent that it pertains to the 1st and 2nd ladies of the Republic, are null, void and of no effect.

6. An order declaring the recommendations in respect of privileges, facilities, salaries and allowances payable to the 1st and 2nd ladies of the Republic as unconstitutional and void.

7. An order restraining the President of the Republic or any other arm, ministry, department, or agency of the executive from implementing any recommendations of the Prof Ntiamoah Committee which pertains to the 1st and 2nd Ladies of the Republic.

Other justices on the panel were Justice Gabriel Pwamang, Justice Avril Lovelace-Johnson, Justice Henrietta Mensa-Bonsu, Justice Barbara Ackah-Yensu, Justice Samuel Asiedu and Ernest Gaewu

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