The ruling New Patriotic Party has dismissed claims by the opposition National Democratic Congress that there is a team of coordinators at the Presidency overseeing the execution of Agenda 111 instead of the Health Ministry.
Speaking at a press conference, NPP’s Director of Communication stated that a team of highly qualified consultants, not based at the Presidency, have been working with the Ministry of Health to ensure the vision for the project is accurately executed.
The consultants, Yaw Buaben Asamoa, explained, consist of Ghanaians who advise and manage the project on behalf of the government.
“This is to ensure the project is given the needed attention required to succeed, owing to the scope and complexity of the programme, which the already burdened Ministry of Health could not have accommodated effectively.”
“However the Ministry of Health is directly involved and has been involved from the beginning in meetings where the project structure and organogram were discussed and agreed,” he said
Mr Asamoa said that the consultants undertake the technical work and advise the government, including the Ministry of Health, and obtains approval of the Ministry on the decisions taken.
His comment comes after the Minority in Parliament accused the government of employing a team of project coordinators at the Presidency under the supervision of the Chief of Staff to implement this project, thereby sidestepping the statutorily mandated agency, the Ministry of Health.
The Minority in a press release claimed that the Chief of Staff handpicked the contractors for Agenda 111.
“This creation of a team of coordinators at the Presidency highly paid and chauffeured in luxurious multipurpose 4 x 4 vehicles at the expense of taxpayer smacks of an agenda to create ‘jobs for the boys’ or worse, corruption.”
“We therefore strongly urge the government to disband the team of coordinators and hand over the implementation of Agenda 111 projects to the Ministry of Health without delay,” parts of the statement read.
However, Mr Asamoa said despite the NDC’s claims, the Presidency has not handpicked any contractor for the project. He added that all procurement rules have been followed religiously, “leading to the engagement of desirous and capable Ghanaian contractors.”
He further noted that the Health Ministry is part of the Coordinating Committee, chaired by the Chief of Staff, that oversees the project along with other Ministries, namely Works and Housing, Local Government and Finance.
“It must be placed on record that contractors have not been handpicked from anywhere. The procurement of contractors have followed due process, and has been consistent with public procurement rules,” he added.