The Chief Executive Officer of The John A. Kufuor Foundation, Professor Baffour Agyeman-Duah, says the extensive powers bestowed on the President by the constitution have made him unresponsive to the demands of the citizenry.
According to him, calls for a reshuffling of the President’s ministerial appointees will yield little results as long as reforms are not put in place to restructure the power relations between the executive and the citizens.
Speaking on JoyNews’ PM Express, Prof. Agyeman-Duah argued that considering the unprecedented chorus from the general public concerning the need for the President to immediately reshuffle his ministers, it is only right that he heeds to these calls and let political efficacy prevail.
“In our democracy when a lot of people are raising their voices for that then I think political efficacy should prevail. But having said that …reshuffling by itself will not make any difference besides having the competent people to rule. But in the present situation we should also be looking at how we cut down expenditures. That is very important.
“But again the problem is that the constitution permits the President to create ministries at will. After all, the constitution says 19, but beyond that the President can go as far as 120 as we saw not too long ago. So it brings into focus the real need for reforms that will restructure the power relations between executives and citizens,” he said.
He noted that the constitution has created an imperial presidency, thus making it difficult for citizens to channel their needs to the ears of the President.
“So from the governance perspective, I have a problem with the way we have structured our governance and the way somehow we have even created an imperial presidency for ourselves,” he said.
He added, “There is a popular saying by somebody I know very well, he says that our constitution gives too much power for a good President to need but for a bad President to have. So if you have a President who is not willing to be responsive, there’s nothing much we can do about that.
“So in terms of reshuffling, simply put, by itself it won’t make any difference, but in our present crisis I think what we have to be looking at is how we expand this whole concept of reshuffling to the size of governance because we are talking about economic difficulties here.”