Martin Kpebu, a private legal practitioner, has expressed concern over the way politicians are spending state resources and still expecting to receive large sums of money as ex-gratia at the end of their tenure.
He argues that politicians may have already benefited from other sources of revenue, which may not have been accounted for, and should not burden the state with ex-gratia payments.
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Kpebu bemoans the continuous depletion of state funds by article 71 and 78 holders who enjoy benefits that the ordinary citizenry is not entitled to. He believes that spending on the political class should be reduced, as they come in the name of service to the nation but end up spending a lot of money.
He also questions why politicians who already receive kickbacks of 10% and 20% from contracts would still expect to receive ex-gratia payments.
Kpebu urges politicians to consider forgoing ex-gratia payments and to focus on serving the nation in good faith. He calls on former President John Dramani Mahama to return the ex-gratia payments he received as a sign of good faith, stating that some decisions should be made based on principle and good faith, not just the law.
Mahama, however, has dismissed Kpebu’s admonition as silly and has indicated his intention to cancel ex-gratia payments due to the prevailing economic situation. Kpebu maintains that the country cannot make progress if leadership and persons seeking to lead only act and speak the law.
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In conclusion, Kpebu’s concerns over the spending habits of politicians and the burden on state funds through ex-gratia payments are valid. It is important for politicians to prioritize serving the nation in good faith, rather than focusing solely on personal gain.
Leaders who act with integrity and in the best interest of the nation are essential for progress and development.