National Chairman of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Mr Freddie Blay
National Chairman of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Mr Freddie Blay

National Chairman of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Freddie Blay, has expressed dissatisfaction over the public outcry the Will of late former Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Forestry Commission, Kwadwo Owusu Afriyie aka Sir John, has generated.

Sir John’s Will, which is a long list of 75 items including houses, parcels of land, bank accounts, investments, businesses, guns and clothes has come under intense scrutiny.

It has also raised public concerns following the discovery that he owned lands in the Achimota Forest and Sakumono Ramsar site.

But according to Mr Blay, the deceased was an illustrious person and assumptions that he amassed wealth through political office will be unfair to him.

“People have misconstrued and exaggerated it. I have known Sir John, he is my contemporary. He is a lawyer, worked at several places and owned some businesses.

“I don’t know how he acquired his assets, but I will not be in a hurry to say that he obtained everything within two years. So we shouldn’t use this to judge Sir John,” he said in an interview with journalists at the Western Regional election over the weekend.

Likewise, Mr Blay stressed Ghanaians should not be in haste to consider it a corrupt act of politicians, especially the NPP government.

Kwadwo Owusu Afriyie (Sir John) was the Chief Executive Officer of the Forestry Commission until his death in July 2020

“Let’s see what we can do. Fortunately, it has come out. It is part of our drive to fight corruption. If indeed he acquired them illegally, why not? Let the axe fall on him but on the other hand, don’t make it look as if this is the mantra of the NPP in corruption. No. It is not so,” he cautioned.

Meanwhile, he urged all and sundry to exercise restraint since the purported Will is under investigation.

“Investigations have started as to what it is. Perhaps, it is part of the land that has been given to the [Owoo family] that Sir John might have purchased.

“It is not that he as a former CEO of the Forestry Commission has gone to get a place for himself. It is not so,” he defended.