The Director of the Centre for European Studies at the University of Ghana, Prof. Ransford Gyampo, has said the Akufo Addo administration has a poor communications outfit which makes the government’s position on issues difficult to be known.
According to him, it sometimes take Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia to clarify government’s stance on matters, when there are Ministers charged with the responsibility of managing official government communications.
The New Patriotic Party (NPP) government is thought to have a crack Information and PR unit at the Information Ministry headed by a seasoned Journalist and Academic, Mustapha Abdul Hamid as Minister of Information and has three deputy Ministers, namely Perry Okudzeto who holds a Master of Arts degree in International Public Relations, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah who’s an experienced media practitioner and Lawyer and Nana Dokua Asiamah-Adjei.
But assessing the performance of the Akufo Addo government’s eleven months in office on Starr FM Tuesday, Prof. Gyampo urged the Ministers in charge of government communications to up their game as Vice President Bawumia cannot take up the additional responsibility of a Minister of Information.
He noted that the government needs an “offensive communicator” to articulate government position on matters, adding that currently government communications is abysmal.
“There were times that issues came up and I had to listen to the Vice President to understand what really their position and posturing were on some of the issues. I kept wondering why should it take the Vice President to be explaining some of these issues to bring about clarity. There was an issue with regards to leveraging our bauxite, I had to listen to the Vice President to be able explain. Other communicators couldn’t do so very well.There were times that you had the Senior Minister saying one thing and the others contradicting themselves.
He added:”So in terms of communications, I think you cannot allow the Vice President to assume another role as a Minister for Information but so far it’s the Vice President who’s able to bring more clarity to issues that are articulated in the public domain. Well, sometimes Kojo Oppong Nkrumah does well, but the point is that you need an “offensive communicator” a very proactive communicator who understands and has a firm grasp of what the position of the government is on any issue and then he goes articulating it out there in a manner that bring clarity. Otherwise, you’re asking the Vice President to also assume the role of Minister in charge for Information and I think it’s not something which is the best so I think in terms of communications I don’t think they’ve done that much well,” Prof. Gyampo noted.