Governance expert want Mahama to clarify gift controversy
Posted on: 2016-Jun-18        
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Constitutional law and governance expert Professor H Kwasi Prempeh has urged President Mahama to clarify issues surrounding the car gift he received from Burkinabe contractor Djibril Kanazoe.

Professor Prempeh says the president’s acceptance of the gift put him in a conflict of interest situation. He wants the president to repair the damage to his personal reputation and that of his office.

Speaking on MultiTV and Joy FM's new analysis program, Newsfile on Saturday, Prof Prempeh said, President John Mahama has been involved in what many have described as an "untidy" controversy following his acceptance of a brand new Ford Expedition (2010 edition) gift from Mr. Djibril Kanazoe in 2012.

Joy News’ investigative journalist, Manasseh Azure Awuni found evidence and obtained an interview from Mr Kanazoe, who said the President called to thank him after receiving the $100,000 valued vehicle.

The law professor says President John Mahama may have walked himself into a conflict of interest situation when he accepted a car gift.

"The Burkinabe contractor owes us as a country, the republic of Ghana, no duty of loyalty; it is the President or the Vice-president at the time who owes us that duty of loyalty or trust," Prof Prempeh said.

He said what the contractor may have intended and what his (Mr Kanazoe) own explanations are as to why he gave the gift is only known to him as he is not accountable to the people of Ghana.

There have been calls for legal action and impeachment process against the President. But Professor Prempeh says any attempt to impeach the president will not work.

"Certainly, it is not easy as legal recourse in this case I don't see how that works. Impeachment is not a purely a legal or judiciary process, it is ultimately a political process," Prof Prempeh said.

He explained that it has to go through a legislative approval and all attempt to try all sorts of schemes to push this through won't work as "ultimately, we live in a highly political state.