ASHANTI REGIONAL Minister, Peter Anarfi Mensah, yesterday stated that he would not comment on a DAILY GUIDE report about his order that all Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs) in the Ashanti Region financially support an upcoming programme of a pro-Mahama group in Kumasi.
Interestingly, even though he refused to comment on the publication which was headlined, ‘Govt Cash For Mahama Boys’, published in yesterday’s edition of the paper, the minister was heard openly struggling to defend the directive during a radio interview.
“I have decided not to comment on this report on radio,” the Ashanti Regional Minister said when asked to relate his side of the story.
Mr Anarfi Mensah, who sounded so angry and panting for breath throughout the duration of the interview, then went on to jab the interviewer for being weak in the English language, saying, “You people are actually displaying the sort of ignorance you have in the English language.”
The journalist, who felt unjustifiably insulted on live radio by the angry-looking minister, then complained bitterly but the minister would not budge as he stood his ground and threw more salvos.
Mr Anarfi Mensah, who was still attacking the journalist for demanding his side of the story on why government money should be spent on NDC footsoldiers, added that “If you are a reporter that doesn’t mean you have the right to do anything without corresponding to the real issue on the ground.”
The Daily Guide report, which was published on the front page, captured an order given by Mr Anarfi Mensah to all the MMDAs in the region to financially support the maiden conference of Youth For Mahama (YFM), a splinter group in the NDC in Kumasi.
Alongside the story, the paper also published the minister’s letter to the MMDAs, which was written on the letterhead of the Regional Coordinating Council (RCC).
Mr Anarfi Mensah defended his action on radio, insisting that he did not err in any way by telling the MMDAs to financially support the pro-Mahama group who are planning to host their first conference in the city.
According to him, the Mahama group approached his office for financial support and he also requested that the MMDAs should rather support the group, which is a branch of the NDC, to organise their event.
“I said request in the letter, which means a polite way of telling someone to assist somebody,” the minister explained, adding that he was utterly surprised that the media was making a case out of his modest appeal to the MMDAs to help the Mahama group.
He stated that he never compelled the MMDAs to give cash to the group, indicating that he only requested that they should help, so there is no need for him (Minister) to be hacked in the media.
“Let us be fair and frank, I did not order the MMDAs to pay the money,” he said.
Mr Anarfi Mensah maintained that he only requested the MMDAs to help the YFM, adding that it is because the broadcast journalist who was interviewing him on the publication was weak in the English language that was why he (journalist) misrepresented the real issue.
Source: Daily Guide
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