Former Kumasi Mayor, Kojo Bonsu, has sided with the Paramount Chief of the Asogli State, Togbe Afede XIV, for returning a sum of GHc365,392 paid him as ex-gratia for serving as a member of the Council of State.
The former mayor argued that it is time to review payments of ex-gratia to Council of State members and Article 71 Office holders as a measure to protect the public purse.
He suggested a possible reduction of the colossal amounts which is giving to people as end of service benefits because Ghanaians are angry about situation especially when the said beneficiaries received ‘wages’ for their services rendered.
“I agree with him [Togbe Afede], he is right. If he feels it [the ex-gratia] is huge, he should return it. That’s his mindset. Nobody forced him to do so and so if he has returned it, he is right [and] I support it,” opined on Angel FM’s Anopa Bofo Morning Show.
When asked if the Constitution needs to be reviewed, especially the portion on ex-gratia, Mr. Kojo Bonsu replied that “what I’m saying is that it’s a constitutional mandate and so let’s review it and slash it down.
"Let’s all discuss it and come to the realization that when we reduce it, it would benefit Ghana because people get upset when they hear these huge figures [as ex-gratia].”
Togbe Afede recently returned GHC365,000 paid him as ex-gratia describing the payment as ‘inappropriate’.
“I did not think the payment was made to trap me, as is being speculated. I believe it was paid to everybody who served on the Council of State. However, I thought that extra payment was inappropriate for a short, effectively part-time work, for which I received a monthly salary and was entitled to other privileges. So, I was very uncomfortable with it”, Togbe Afede clarified.
He added that “I want to add that my rejection of the payment was consistent with my general abhorrence of the payment of huge Ex Gratia and other outrageous benefits to people who have by their own volition offered to serve our poor country,”