The youth wing of the opposition National Democratic Congress, NDC, has declared a #NoSalaryUprising for Presidential spouses insisting the decision is unconstitutional.
According to the main opposition youth wing, they will stop at nothing to ensure the approval of allowances for the wives of Presidents and Vice Presidents is reversed.
“In line with this, the Youth Wing will in the coming days invoke the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court to declare this cancerous and insensitive act unconstitutional,” a statement signed by the National Youth Organiser of the NDC, George Opare Addo said.
A five-member emolument committee which was set up in June 2019 by President Nana Akufo-Addo among other things recommended the said allowance.
While confirming that there had been an increment in allowances for the spouses of the President and the Vice-President, the Information Minister, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah emphasised that that was an approval given by the Seventh Parliament.
“The President does 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 only recommended that an arrangement for the spouses be made formal and that received approval from Parliament,” he indicated.
But the NDC youth wing maintained that:” The provisions of article 71 of the 1992 Constitution is elaborate and unambiguous by listing the public officials bound to draw their salaries from the Consolidated Fund.”
Its Press Statement further stressed: “Indeed, 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.”
Meanwhile, the Executive Director of the Ghana Center for Democratic Development (CDD-Ghana), Professor Henry Kwasi Prempeh has argued that if Government wants to pay First and/or Second Spouses from the public fisc, it must introduce a Bill to that effect.
“If that’s what they want done, they must get the Government to introduce a Bill to that effect, and thereby allow and ensure public participation in the legislative debate on this matter.”