Scrap Council of State if it has outlived its usefulness – Dr. Oduro Osae

Governance and Public Financial Management Analyst; Dr. Eric Oduro Osae, has made a case for the scrapping or review of the Council of State.

He argues that there is no point in keeping the Council of State when its advisory role is not binding.

“It is about time we reconsidered the functions of the Council of State in our governance structure. If we sincerely believe that we cannot allow the Council of State to advise Parliament, the judiciary and the executive and the decision to be binding on them, we should scrap it”, he suggested on the Big Issue on Citi TV.

This comes in the wake of the decision of a former member of the Council, Togbe Afede XIV to return an ex- gratia due him, worth more than GH¢360,000.00.

According to the Chief of the Asogli State, his decision was based on the fact that Ghana is economically handicapped, hence he could not accept the amount for his part-time service to the country.

But Dr. Oduro Osae believes the presidential advisory body must be either scrapped or reviewed to make the country’s governance system more useful.

“There is no point having a Council of State that will advise, and the decision is not binding. So far as we are not allowing the Council of State to advise all arms of state, we should scrap it because we have other institutions. If we are reviewing or revising their role in our governance architecture, then we should tone down on the political appointees that are appointed to the Council of State.”

The Agbogbomefia of the Asogli state, Togbe Afede XIV has explained his rejection of over GH¢365,000 ex-gratia paid him for serving on the Council of State between 2017 and 2020.

He said he finds it inappropriate to receive the said amount when he already took monthly salaries for serving on the Council.

According to him, he explored avenues to return the money which hit his account in July 2021, which he successfully effected on March 4, 2022, adding that “after weeks of trying, I obtained advice on how to refund inappropriate payments to the State, and on March 4, 2022, I made the refund into the Controller & Accountant General’s Department Account at the Bank of Ghana.”

“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,” the statement concluded.

His clarifications came after many questioned the rationale behind the refund.