Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Atta-Mills Institute, Samuel Koku Anyidoho supports plans by the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) to procure a new Presidential Jet.
Mr. Anyidoho, who served in the capacity of a Communications Director under the Atta-Mills led National Democratic Congress (NDC) government and had the privilege of travelling with him, noted that the late President faced “serious issues with the tight occupancy space of the Falcon 900 EXE.”
“The Falcon”, the Jet which has been the subject of debate over a period in the public domain, he added, “does not have the needed capacity and what it really takes to be a jet that is well-equipped for the use of Presidents”.
Mr. Anyidoho also cited fuelling issues as a cause of delay in the President’s flights for functions overseas. According to him, the landing and refuelling at least once before the Falcon reached its destination was part of the reasons late President Mills “preferred to travel via commercial flights though it had its own security challenges and implications.”
The comment came when the debate on the purchase of a new jet was renewed after North Tongu Member of Parliament, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa disclosed that he had filed two questions seeking to elicit answers on the cost of President Akufo Addo’s trip to the United States of America.
“The President has chartered another flight, which cost us GH₵3.7 million. I am filing two other questions on the latest revelations, and I am hoping that this time, the government’s ministers will not pussyfoot and run away from accountability as they have done all of these months,” Mr. Ablawa said on Citi FM’s Eyewitness News.
Though the excommunicated National Democratic Congress (NDC) party Deputy General Secretary does not contend the government’s decision to purchase a new aircraft, he advocates that the Jet be named “The Eagle”.
Explaining the rationale behind the suggestion, he said apart of it being the most powerful bird on earth, the Eagle is the “National Bird of the Republic of Ghana−that is why we have it on our Coat-of-Arms”.