It’s ‘Seneless’ to backdate and pay ‘illegal’ allowances to presidential spouses – Kwesi Pratt
Seasoned Journalist, Kwesi Pratt Jnr. is disgusted over the attempt to pay salaries to First and Second Ladies backdated to year 2017, the beginning of President Akufo-Addo’s tenure.
Prof. Yaa Ntiamoa-Badu Committee set up to look into the emoluments of Article 71 holders made some recommendations to formalize the allowances that First and Second Ladies receive.
The payment of allowances, now salaries, is said to have been implemented during the era of former Presidents Jerry John Rawlings and John Agyekum Kufour.
Since then, President and Vice President’s wives have been receiving money every month.
According to the Committee’s recommendations, the First and Second Ladies’ salaries are to be backdated from 2017 to date but Kwesi Pratt has vehemently kicked against the move.
Speaking to host Kwami Sefa Kayi on Peace FM’s ‘Kokrokoo’ programme, Kwesi Pratt argued that, “The arrangement is that we should pay them as cabinet Ministers – the equivalent of cabinet Ministers’ salary – that hasn’t happened before. I have no idea that it’s happened before. Also, the arrangement indicates that we should give them backpay from 2017; if we pay them already, why must we give them a backpay from 2017? It simply doesn’t make sense. So, it is not true that it’s something we do already.”
“Just from the point of view of logic is that we do pay already but now we’re saying we should backdate it from 2017, it simply doesn’t make sense. If we already pay them, why should we then start from 2017?” he questioned.
The Managing Editor of the Insight newspaper added that, aside it being senseless to backdate the salaries, it is also illegal to pay the President and Veep’s wives in the first place.
“More importantly, what we’re saying is that those salaries, monthly salaries equivalent to the salaries of cabinet Ministers is totally illegal. It’s unconstitutional . . . It is unconstitutional to treat them as Article 71 holders,” he emphasized.