The Vice-Chairman of the Defence and Interior Committee of Parliament, Mr Collins Owusu Amankwah, has accused the Minority in Parliament of hypocrisy and double standards over the latter’s claim that the security agencies were secretly recruiting people.
The Minority, last week, described the alleged secret recruitments by the Ministry of Defence and the Ministry for the Interior, as “unacceptable public service practice.”
According to the Minority, secretly recruiting people into the various security services without any public announcement or notice, in accordance with the 1992 Constitution and the Public Services requirement and regulations, denies legitimate Ghanaians the right to apply into the various services.
Speaking to the parliamentary press corps on Friday, 17 July 2020, Minority leader Haruna Iddrisu noted that his Caucus’ attention had been drawn to the alleged secret recruitment of about 1,600 persons into the various security agencies.
Mr Iddrisu said: “The attention of the Minority has been drawn to secret and clandestine recruitments into the Ghana Armed Forces, the Ghana Police Service and the Ghana Immigration Service. In respect of one, we’re told that the number is about 1,600 recruits.”
The Minority also questioned why recruitments into the Ghana Police Service have not been advertised publicly since 2017.
Mr Iddrisu stated: “In respect of the Ghana Police Service, the last time the public witnessed a public advert, in accordance with the Constitution and the Public Services requirement and regulations, was in 2017. So, we’re asking fundamental questions: how come that for 2018, 2019 and 2020, there is no official public recruitment, advertised, serving notice to Ghanaian citizens to prepare themselves for recruitment into this important state institutions and agencies, the security agencies.”
“The Ghana Armed Forces, I’m told there’s some training going on; at the Police Depot, there’s some training going on between Tesano and Kpalugwu in Bolgatanga. This is not an acceptable public service practice. The Constitution requires that there shall be no discrimination on the basis of gender, geography, reason, ethnicity and religion. The idea of a public notice allows every eligible, legitimate Ghanaian citizen desirous of joining the security, to apply,” Mr Iddrisu said.
In response, however, the Majority side told journalists on Monday, 20 July 2020 that: “It smacks of hypocrisy and double standards on the part of the Minority Leader” to make those allegations.
“He knows that the process has been very open and transparent to the extent that he knows that those who are being called for training are Ghanaians who qualified and he admitted in his claims that some qualified but he wants the due process to be followed”, Mr Amankwah noted.
According to him, Mr Iddrisu’s claims “were based on hearsay”, adding: “He himself admitted that he was told”. “And I think we should be serious in this country. In the wake of COVID-19, where people want to see that we are maximising the welfare of our people, we should not reduce the arguments to hearsay”, he noted.
In his view, the allegation by the Minority “could be a diversionary tactic because when Interpol issued a publication on Red Notice, [the] Minority Leader wanted to divert the attention of Ghanaians, so, he just pushed out this story just to divert the public view on the Airbus saga”.
The lawmaker said the security services were only clearing backlogs.
“Ghana Immigration Service, for instance, 84,000 people applied and out of that number, over 41,000 were shortlisted. And for them to do justice to the shortlisted applicants through financial clearance through the Ministry responsible (Finance Ministry) is what they are doing. So, they are calling them in batches. It is the same with the Ghana Armed Forces and Ghana Police Service. The emphasis is on the backlog, which ought to be absorbed and based on that they are calling them in batches,” he explained.