View Full Version : Mills: I'm Sorry For 'Snubbing' Kufuor, CJ

17th February 2011, 11:21 PM
President John Evans Atta Mills has rendered an unqualified apology to former President John Agyekum Kufuor and Chief Justice Georgina Woode for leaving out their names in his salutation ahead of his State of the Nation address in pPrliament on Thursday.

President Mills, at the beginning of his 3rd State of the Nation address since he assumed office, duly acknowledged the presence of Speaker of Parliament Joyce Bamford Addo and Vice President John Mahama, but failed to do same to the CJ, who was seated on the President's right on the dais, and ex-president Kufuor who was seated in the front row of the seats reserved for visiting dignitaries.

“Good morning Mr. Vice President, Good morning Madam Speaker, Good morning Honourable Members, Good morning, distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen, Good morning my brothers and sisters", President Mills said.

However, moments after his address, President Mills in an interaction with the media, sought to explain that his failure to acknowledge Mr. Kufuor, Madam Georgina Woode and members of the Diplomatic Corps was not intentional or malice-intended, but an oversight arising from his commitment to observe Parliamentary protocol.

“There is a certain protocol about State of the Nation Address. When you go to Parliament, the person you address is the Speaker. And this has been done over the years. Today, I just wanted to veer off a little and therefore I acknowledged those who were around including the Speaker, Honorable members and distinguished ladies and gentlemen. In fact, I forgot to mention the Chief Justice. It wasn’t intentional at all. I am told that President Kufuor was also there and I missed him. The Diplomatic corps were there, Honorable Ministers were there, Justices of the Supreme Court were all there but it was not that I wanted to slight anybody but that was the protocol so if I left anybody out it was not intentional. It was just because I wanted to make a point and I did. So I want to apologize to all of them. But next time I have to follow protocol to address only the Speaker when I go to Parliament,” he explained.

Touching on the refusal of the Minority Leader in Parliament, Osei Kyei Mensah-Bonsu to be part of a parliamentary retinue to see him off, President Mills said “Well, it is his choice. But I believe that we have certain protocols in this country and there are certain things that you need to do irrespective of your position. I think that we must all stick to the rules".

Source: Peacefmonline.com/Ghana