Oti Bless is a joke; Mahama must withdraw his nomination – IMANI

John Oti Bless

John Oti Bless

President of think tank, IMANI Ghana, Franklin Cudjoe, has asked President John Dramani Mahama to withdraw the nomination of Nkwanta North MP, John Bless Oti, as Deputy Minister-designate for Local Government, considering that he could not even verify his own name.

Speaking on Citi FM’s ‘The Big Issue’ on Saturday, Mr. Cudjoe argued that, Mr. Oti Bless’ posture before Parliament’s Appointments Committee on Friday proved he is not fit for the position, and thus questioned the motive behind the nomination.

In a vetting that was aired live on state broadcaster, GTV, the young unmarried MP, who has fathered two children, fumbled in answering many pertinent questions thrown at him by committee members.

Even the least of questions seeking clarity on his own CV presented to the Committee, could not be answered satisfactorily.

The MP, made several omissions on the CV, and failed to add other vital information where necessary. At several points of the vetting, committee members could not control their laughter.

There were also a lot of inconsistences in his educational background as he claimed to have cut short his degree programme, but went on to have a masters’ degree, which he is still pursuing.

The MP also confessed he never did the mandatory national service for tertiary graduates. Aside the many discrepancies identified on his CV, Mr. Oti Bless also presented to the Committee a certificate that had different names.
That confusion arose from a change of name he did some years ago, but even the writings in his affidavit confirming the change of name, were strangely turned upside down.

He was subsequently advised by the committee, to go

back to his alma mater, the 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.

Would he be approved at all cost?

There are fears Mr. Oti Bless may be approved despite his obvious poor performance, since the exercise has largely been viewed as a mere formality, where appointees get wholesale approval irrespective of their output.

Commenting on the quality of appointees needed at the Local Government Ministry, Franklin Cudjoe called on President Mahama to withdraw Mr. Oti Bless’ nomination.

“The Appointments Committee this time around did a perfect job. But what’s this joke? I think the President should just withdraw this guy because it appears to me that he doesn’t even understand who he is. I mean he has no identity.

How can this person be representing us at the local government level? This is a disaster. Who advised the President to put this guy there in the first place? I don’t even understand it. At this juncture, we don’t want further dumpling down. Please Mr. President, maybe assistant DCE position or something will do if there is anything like that. Maybe he can be a door-catcher in the NDC, or a messenger at the party office because he doesn’t know himself and has no identity.”

NDC’s Chris Ackumey agrees with Frankiln Cudjoe

A member of the National Democratic Congress’ (NDC) legal team, Chris Ackumey, who was also on ‘The Big Issue’, agreed with Mr. Cudjoe’s position, but said it was the duty of the Parliament’s Appointments Committee to reject the nominee if they share similar sentiments.

He said it was wrong to criticize the President for the nomination, saying the President often assigns people to carry out such duties, and so cannot be faulted.

“John Bless Oti, I hope that he was not overwhelmed or the spirits of ‘kpokpoblibli’ or ‘Gbeshie’ were not in operation and that is his performance then I am afraid. And I will say it openly that, he is not going to be appointed as Minister of the NDC but Minister of Ghana and for Ghanaians.

So if Ghanaians have seen his performance is not encouraging for that position, it is up to the Vetting Committee to do the right thing.

New Patriotic Party (NPP) Member of Parliament for Ayawaso West Wuogon Constituency, Emmanuel Kyeremanten Agyarko, who witnessed Friday’s vetting exercise, somewhat did not want to offend his colleague member, but also admitted the nominee performed poorly.

“As for me, he is my colleague MP so I won’t sit on radio and lambaste him, but I am saying that the appointing authority should be responsible for this situation.

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