23 July 2016

Deputy minister-designate’s multiple names cause stir at vetting

deputy local govtThe Appointment Committee of Parliament on Friday July 22 advised the Deputy Minister-designate for Local Government, John Bless Oti, to go back to Nkwanta Senior High School to procure an original certificate bearing his original name from birth before the Committee decides whether to approve his nomination or not.

This became necessary when Mr. Oti’s certificate presented to the committee bore different names.

Originally called Kopi Kwabena John, the nominee, presented a sworn affidavit issued on February 2005 with a change of name. He had changed his name from Kopi Kwabena John to John Oti Kwabena Bless. However, the Curricula Vitae and some certificates he presented to the committee bore the name John Bless Oti.

The nominee insisted Oti was his surname while his documents and the sworn affidavit proved Bless was his surname.

Although Mr. Oti admitted he had not done any name change since he swore an affidavit in 2005 to bear the name John Oti Kwabena Bless, his certificate from the University awarded to him on August 2012 bore the name John Bless Oti.

Mr. Oti explained to the committee that the confusion resulted from the arrangement of his name and that he would work on it. He also told the committee he had complained to authorities of the University of Ghana to correct the name on his certificate.

Majority leader Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu advised the nominee to go back to Nkwanta Senior High School, his Alma Mater to produce a certificate bearing his original name before the committee considers passing him.

The Suame legislator noted that it was possible to have a name change but was not possible for the nominee to keep juggling the names.

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