The Minister for Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah says the government welcomes the views of some 400 civil society organizations who are challenging the government’s decision to ask the Auditor-General, Daniel Domelevo to proceed on leave.
The Minister said it is good that the CSOs are allowed to air their views on the matter and seek to pursue it in court, although he would advise that they boycott the idea of campaigning vigorously to have the leave directive reversed.
“No amount of debate between some of our good friends from the CSOs and from our side will resolve this difference in my opinion,” he said.
“It is my understanding that they have hinted that they will be going to court to test their opinion… If indeed that is the case, then we may not need to have a campaign on the side while you are in court asking the court to make a decision on whether or not the opinion you hold is actually correct,” he added.
President Akufo-Addo last week directed the Auditor-General to proceed on a 167-day accumulated leave.
The President said Mr. Domelevo had only taken a few days off work since he assumed office in December 2016.
Following a letter to challenge the basis for the directive by Mr. Domelevo, the president announced a 44-day extension of the leave days in accordance with sections 20 (1) and 31 of the Labour Act, 2003 (651).
The development has since seen the CSOs jump to the defence of Mr. Domelevo describing the decision by President Akufo-Addo as inappropriate and not grounded in law.
At a press conference on Tuesday, the CSOs said they even intend to explore the legal route to get the court to provide guidance on the matter.
Kojo Oppong Nkrumah in an interview on Eyewitness News said: “It is welcoming to the extent that we have a democracy in which Civil Society Organizations believe that when an action of this nature, based on law is taken, they should be able to voice up and start a campaign to go on this line,” he said.
He criticized the CSOs over what he believes was their failure to speak out when the erstwhile government based on the same provisions asked someone to proceed on leave.
“This is not the first time that the Executive has applied this law, even with reference to the Audit Service in this manner. When the last one took place, we did not have Civil Society Organization groups have this opinion and proceed to start a campaign based on this opinion,” he said.