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Saturday, July 10, 2010

State accommodation for J.A. Kufuor nearing completion

Former President Kufuor currently operates from his private office
Former President Kufuor currently operates from his private office
Former President John Agyekum Kufuor will soon be moving into a new office accommodation provided by the state, his spokesperson Frank Agyekum has confirmed.

Mr Agyekum told Joy FM on Friday the office is located at Cantonments in Accra but said they are still in consultation with the government to finalize issues.

“As it [new office] is now, it remains a residential accommodation. It needs to be turned into a proper office accommodation so there have to be renovation taking place in there. But yes a place has been offered, the [former] President [Kufuor] has seen it…and he thinks it is quite ok for him,” said Frank Ahyekum.

He was, however, not able to tell the exact date they would be moving into the building, saying “I am sure it is going to take a little bit of a time”.

Meanwhile, the former president is yet to receive his full retirement package after the Mills-led government rejected a package proposed by the Chinery Hesse Committee on presidential emolument and was reviewed by the Ishmael Yamson Committee.

The Mary Chinery Hesse Committee originally recommended that the former president be given two houses, six fully insured vehicles – fueled and chauffeur driven, to be replaced every four years.

The committee also recommended a once-a-year all-expenses-paid oversees travel, a non-taxable pension and a $1 million-dollar seed money for a non-governmental organisation.

But Mr Agyekum said aside the office accommodation being prepared for the former president “all other issues are still outstanding”.

He was also not in a position to tell if the agreed accommodation falls under the Chinery Hesse Committee or under the recommendations of the Greenstreet Committee.

“Certain things are basic, whether it is the Greenstreet report or it is the Chinery Hesse report, there is a basic thing that you have to give them an office accommodation, so in that regards, it does not really matter whether it is the Greenstreet or the Chinery Hesse because both of them agreed that they should give the former president an office accommodation and that is what is being done.”

He however placed on record that former President Kufuor is not “insisting” or putting pressure on the government to get things done for him.

This development comes in the wake of a recent revelation by the former First Lady Nana Konadu Agyemang Rawlings that the former First Family is looking for a place to rent after their official residence at Ridge was razed by fire on February 14 this year.

The government has however described her statement as unfortunate after rejectingtwo temporary accommodations offered by the state.

Story by Isaac Essel/Myjoyonline.com

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