$14,000 luxurious VIP jet: Ablakwa lied - Eugene Arhin

The Director of Communications at the Presidency, Eugene Arhin, has dismissed claims by the Member of Parliament for North Tongu, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa that President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo hired luxury VIP jet at $14,000 per hour.

Presidential jet

He said the President and his entourage didn't use a Luxembourg-based aircraft registered LX-DIO.

"Let me put it on record that the Member of Parliament for North Tongu who made this disclosure put out the information that the President traveled on a jet with the number LX-DIO.

"I travel with the President on every single trip and on the trip to the UK first, for the Global Education Summit, and subsequently to Germany, the President did not use this jet. I don’t know where he got his information from," he said.

Ablakwa accused the President of wanton abuse of discretion in the decision to hire the jet at this rate.

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo traveled to Germany at the invitation of the Chancellor of Germany, Angela Merkel.

During the trip, the President, among other things, delivered a speech in Dusseldorf, Germany, last Monday as part of the 75th-anniversary celebration of North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany’s number one industrial region and most populous state.

Commenting on the President's trip, in a Facebook post on Tuesday, August 31, Ablakwa said "It has become absolutely imperative to demand a national policy on presidential travels akin to what pertains in other jurisdictions.

"This is most crucial to avoid the wanton abuse of discretion by President Akufo-Addo at the expense of the suffering taxpayer. In many other jurisdictions, presidential travels are regulated by strict policies which mandate presidents to use presidential aircraft for official purposes. Indeed, in other countries such as the USA, presidents are obliged to reimburse the state if presidential aircraft are used for private business — that private business includes political campaigns and political fundraising events."

He added: "Clearly, richer countries whose benevolence we are depending on to come to our aid with COVID-19 vaccines as our president pleaded with the Germans a few days ago are undoubtedly doing much better than us in ensuring that taxpayer funds are not dissipated in catering for the lavish lifestyles of insensitive leaders.

"From our continuous monitoring, President Akufo-Addo still prefers to use VIP charter jets for his European travels despite being in firm possession of Ghana’s presidential jet – the Dassault Falcon 900-EXE which remains in pristine condition and can fly non-stop to all those European destinations. Since Ghana received President Kufuor's ordered Falcon in 2010, both President Mills and President Mahama have used the long-range aircraft for all presidential travels."

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