Former President John Mahama has pledged that the following National Democratic Congress (NDC) administration will push for a review of the 1992 constitution to address concerns including ex-gratia payments and judicial reform.
The 2020 NDC presidential candidate thinks Ghana’s democratic progress has been halted by the current Akufo-Addo administration.
In a meeting with NDC lawyers, the former president gave the assurance that the constitution review process, which began under the administration of the late President Atta-Mills, would continue if the NDC were to win the election in 2024.
“The next NDC government must commit to completing the review of the 1992 Constitution that President John Evans Atta Mills of blessed memory began.” This review should, among other things, aim to reform the judiciary and address head-on issues concerning ex-gratia payments and other Article 71 emoluments.”
Ex gratia payments to former public office holders are a contentious issue in Ghana, with details of these payments, particularly to former presidents, generating intense public interest.
However, in recent years, debates have emerged over the number of officials who receive ex gratia payments and whether the payments are even necessary.
In 2017, Elikplim L. Agbemava, a Ghanaian lawyer, petitioned the Supreme Court for clarification on some of the benefits enjoyed by Article 71 officeholders.
The lawyer sought to strip presidential staffers of salaries, allowances, and privileges similar to those enjoyed by Article 71 officeholders, claiming that such benefits are “inconsistent with Article 71 and thus unconstitutional.”
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