Agona West MCE, Mrs Justina Marigold Assan

Majority of assembly members of the Agona West Municipal Assembly (AWMA) have disassociated themselves from attempts by few of their colleagues to remove Mrs Justina Marigold Assan, the Municipal Chief Executive (MCE) from office.

They have therefore described a recent press release by
their colleagues against the MCE as unfounded and mischievous and intended to
disgrace and tarnish the image of the MCE who happens to be the first woman MCE
for the municipality.

The angry assembly members in their statement advised the
MCE to resign or get impeached.

In a strongly-worded statement, they accused the MCE of incompetence, abuse of power, injustice, misuse of office, breach of the procurement process in awarding contracts, disrespect and bad human relationship, among others.

Rebuttal

Addressing a press conference to respond to the disgruntled
assembly members in Agona Swedru last Monday, Mr Frank Yeboah, the spokesperson
for the majority of the assembly members said that the MCE had not in any way,
displayed incompetence as touted by the angry assembly members.

“How can an incompetent MCE, in her quest to ameliorate the
issue of lack of potable drinking water to remote communities through her
lobbying skills, manage to attract the Qatari Government to drill over 20
mechanised boreholes for some far-to-reach areas in the municipality,” he
quizzed.

Mr Yeboah noted that the MCE’s move has helped to increase
the coverage of potable water in the entire municipality, which is highly
commendable, saying that under her leadership the municipality was adjudged the
best district in the region in the sanitation category during the maiden awards
ceremony instituted by Mr Kwamena Duncan, the Central Regional Minister.

He added that the MCE, upon assumption of office, indicated
her resolve to operate an open door administration, which would enable her to
receive everyone irrespective of one’s race, political or religious
affiliations.

“We believe that the MCE’s decision to receive chiefs,
opinion leaders, party and non-party supporters is not out of place to warrant
her removal from office,” he said.

He noted that the angry assembly members must be reminded
that the office of the MCE is a public office, asking when it became a crime
for an MCE to receive chiefs, opinion leaders and the likes to the extent of it
resulting in their removal from office.

Public engagement

Mr Yeboah, who is also the assembly member for Lower
Bobikuma, noted that apart from the MCE receiving members of the public in her
office, she has visited communities to interact with the people to take into
consideration their needs for the necessary actions to be taken.

He mentioned that the MCE, since her assumption of office,
has organised several stakeholders’ meetings in many communities such as
Bobikuma, Abodom, Agona Swedru, among others, ostensibly to touch base with the
local people.  

Revenue decline

Responding to the concerns about revenue shortfall, Mr Yeboah
pointed out that the assembly has, for the past years, recorded low revenue
between the first and third quarters annually but these improved at the fourth
quarter.

He stressed that “it should be placed on record that it was
under her able leadership in the year 2017 that the assembly recorded a huge
increase in revenue collected in terms of absolute figures since 2015.  
 

Challenging the total amount used for the staff awards
ceremony, he indicated that the budgeted amount was rather GH₵32,000.00 and not
GH₵120,000.00 as was alleged by the aggrieved assembly members.

“An amount of GH₵20,000.00 was from the District Assemblies Common
Fund (DACF) and the additional GH₵12,000.00 sourced from IGF which is not
beyond the MCE’s threshold,” he noted.

He pointed out the actual amount spent on the award ceremony
was GH₵19,097.00 which is not beyond the MCE’s threshold.

He pointed out that the assembly members have not made any
such claims against the MCE and that it was an agenda by a few of the members
who have made it their habit to always seek MCE’s appointed for the
municipality for their personal gain.

“We affirm our unflinching support to the MCE and charge her
to discharge her duties diligently towards developing Agona West and making it
one of the best in the region and beyond,” he added.