The Member of Parliament (MP) for North Tongu, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, has criticized the Akufo-Addo-Bawumia administration for transferring control of the W.E.B. Du Bois Centre to a newly incorporated private foundation.

According to Ablakwa, the newly formed entity, named the W.E.B. Du Bois Museum Foundation Ghana LBG, lacks a proven track record but has been granted a 50-year mandate to oversee and manage the Du Bois Centre.

He expressed concern that this agreement, signed on September 22, 2023, by Ghana’s Minister for Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, and the Attorney-General and Minister for Justice, Godfred Yeboah Dame, gives the foundation significant authority over the centre.

In a social media post, Ablakwa revealed that under the terms of the agreement, the foundation will appoint a majority of six board members, including the board chairman, effectively exerting full control.

In contrast, the Government of Ghana will have only three appointees on the board, limiting its influence.

Ablakwa further criticized the arrangement for restricting governmental representation in top management roles to just two positions, while allowing the foundation an unrestricted number.

“The foundation will also appoint the board chairman giving them absolute control. The bizarre agreement also ensures that only 2 Government of Ghana nominees will have top management positions as the foundation enjoys an unlimited number. It is particularly incredulous that under the sleazy agreement, the foundation will take possession of the W.E.B. Du Bois Centre and have a 2-year period to raise an initial US$15million. This sweetheart deal smacks of yet another dubious work and pay arrangement,” he added.

The North Tongu MP questioned the rationale behind granting such extensive control to a private entity with limited oversight from the Ghanaian government.

“It is most shocking that the Government of Ghana would be comfortable with this lopsided agreement. Without parliamentary scrutiny and ratification of the scandalous agreement, the new managers are readying to take over instructing all vendors and clients at the W.E.B. Du Bois Centre to immediately vacate the premises.”

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