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2 letters from top government appointees that have caused nationwide stirs

There are brewing tensions in the country currently between the British High Commission and the hierarchy of the Ghana Police Service after the latter penned a long reply to a 28-worded tweet by the former.

The central focus of the matter in contention was the arrest of a convener for the #FixTheCountry movement, Oliver Barker-Vormawor, on the morning of May 17, 2022, when he was on his way to court.

The #FixTheCountry convener is standing trial in court for treason felony over some comments he made on February 11, 2022, threatening that should the controversial Electronic Transfer Levy (E-Levy) pass, he would stage a coup himself.

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Subsequently, the police stated that the arrest of Barker-Vormawor in May was in relation to his flouting of some traffic offences, but the British High Commissioner to Ghana, Harriet Thompson, didn’t seem pleased with it.

“Oliver barker Vormawor, convener of #FixTheCountry movement, arrested again, I understand for a motoring offence on his way to court. I’ll be interested to see where this goes…” she tweeted in response to the news.

Weeks after, a four-page letter signed under the name of the Inspector General of Police, COP Dr. George Akuffo Dampare, made its way to the public even though it was indicated as RESTRICTED.

The content has generated huge national debates and conversations.

But this would not be the first time in recent years that a four-page letter has led to nationwide conversations.

Akufo-Addo increases Domelevo’s forced leave days from 123 to 167 after protest letter

In 2020, a heated trade of words happened between then Auditor-General, Daniel Yao Domelevo, and the presidency after the outspoken public servant attracted a lot of ‘taming’ from the latter over some issues, including his leave days.

In the first letter on that subject, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo ordered Domelevo to proceed on a mandatory 123-days accumulated leave but the outspoken public servant contested it, stating that there was nothing like ‘accumulated leave’ in the labour laws.

This response from Daniel Yao Domelevo attracted a detailed, lengthier response from the Office of the President.

The contents of the four-page letter became a topical issue in the country, especially after the letter increased the initial leave days of Domelevo by 44 additional days.

In the letter signed by the Executive Secretary to the president, Nana Asante Bediatuo, it said: “First of all, for the avoidance of any doubt, your accumulated annual leave of 123 working days which you were directed to take with effect from Wednesday, 1 July 2020, was in respect of the period 2017 to 2019, which you had worked without taking any annual leave and did not include 2020. If, however, you have decided to include your annual leave for the year 2020, then it is expected that you will resume work after a well-deserved leave of 167 working days, with effect from 1 July 2020.

“It is necessary to correct the wrong impression you have sought to create in the public domain regarding the President’s directive to you to proceed on your accumulated annual leave. The President has, at all times, acted based on sound legal principles, the rule of law, and good governance practices, and the good people of Ghana will not be misled by your lack of understanding of the position of law, for which you may be forgiven since you are not a lawyer.

“Accordingly, the directive of the President stands as amended above to the 167 working days with effect from 1st July 2020. While this letter is being sent to you through normal channels, we have taken the liberty to publish it publicly in the same medium by which your letter came to our attention. Please accept the President’s best wishes,” the statement noted.

Read the full contents of that letter below:

Dampare’s 15 questions to British Commissioner asking her to ‘di wo fie asem’

The Inspector-General of Police, COP Dr. George Akuffo Dampare, sent a four-page response to the British High Commissioner to Ghana, Harriet Thompson, over a tweet she made on May 17, 2022, expressing interest in the case of the arrest of Oliver Barker-Vormawor.

The convener of the #FixTheCountry movement had been arrested on the day in what the police said was due to traffic-related offences, when he was on his way to court for a case of treason felony he is standing trial for.

In her tweet, Harriet Thompson wrote, “Oliver Barker Vormawor, convener of #FixTheCountry movement, arrested again, I understand for a motoring offence on his way to court. I’ll be interested to see where this goes…”

But in what seems like the longest reply ever penned down by the IGP on any matter since he took office, COP Dr. George Akuffo Dampare asked the British diplomat to stay within her means and not meddle in the internal matters of her host country.

“For the moment, we would recommend a Ghanaian saying that might guide you in your diplomatic engagements. The saying goes: ‘di wo fie asem’ – it means learn to keep within the limits of what concerns you,” the concluding parts of the statement signed by the IGP said.

Below is the full letter as released and shared by the Ghana Police Service on their Facebook page on Tuesday, May 31, 2022:

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