Okoe Vanderpuije MUST GO!

Chief Executive officer of the Accra Metropolitan Assembly, Alfred Okoe Vanderpuije

In 1956, Lal Bahdur Shastri resigned as Railway Minister in India over a railway accident that took 144 lives. Tokyo Mayor Yoichi Masuzoe in the 1980s resigned over allegations of financial misconduct.

In 2005, Michael D. Brown, Director of Federal Emergency Management Agency resigned over his handling hurricane Katrina; a South Korean Prime Minister once resigned for his slow reaction to a ferry accident killing 200.

Last month British Premier David Cameron promised to resign after Britain voted to leave the European Union. He did not have the moral courage to remain in office after losing in the referendum.

On June 3, 2015, Accra was left underwater. The result – 160 deaths – from the resultant explosion of the GOIL Service Station at the Kwame Nkrumah Circle.

Experts attribute the flooding to the failure and inability of city authorities to handle tasks assigned them.

According to Dr Kwabena Agyeman Boakye, President of the Ghana Institution of Engineers, the June 3, 2015 floods, “could have been avoided if we had stuck to plans of flood storage points.

Today, June 3rd invokes not only fear, but pain of avoidable loss. Strangely no one, not even the Chief Executive of the Accra Metropolitan Assembly, Mr Alfred Okoe Vanderpuije, has taken responsibility for what happened.

A year on, there is very little city managers under the watch of Mr Vanderpuije, have done to instill change and show responsibility. They actually have no clue what caused the flooding, as Mr Vanderpuije told the Special Committee.

“As I sit here now, I do not know what caused the fire. Everything is hearsay.”

As I write, the Odaw has tons of silt. But Mr Mayor is happy contesting to be MP.

Resigning from office is not a high act. It is a part of the game of political expediency. It is not more than a response to the inner voice of conscience. It should not be reactive to external pressures. Resignation absolves an individual of guilt and worse; it gives him the halo of a hero.

He is in no mood to set benchmarks in honesty or raise standards for public officers. I wish Mr Vanderpuije, will elevate resignation to a high political art that will make him a tough act.

The Mayor must go! Resign or be sacked. He must take responsibility for the 160 died on HIS WATCH because he failed to prevent it.

The Goil Service Station area still wears the pain of death; and not even the Mr Vanderpuije feels it. I heard you say, “Its politics”. Probably, but what about those lives and others to die again if…? Chief Executives of Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies must not be selected, must have abilities, not political colours.

Okoe must go for the sake of the 160. But the game has no conscience. He is back to the same people for votes as MP. He may enter Parliament. But does not deserve it.

Okoe won’t resign. We may force a sack, but it is politics. Moral Leadership is a different kind of leadership, serving others. Okoe is none.

By Kweku Asare| 3news.com|Ghana


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