In the wake of the current noise being generated as a result of attempts to rationalize payments to the spouses of the President and Vice President. We reproduce to you extracts of parliamentary hansard in August/September 2000 in which former Chief of Staff Nana Ato Dadzie sought to justify the practice. It appears the practice is not a new phenomenon

Extract of Parliamentary hansard August/Sept 2000

This arrangement was a  special purpose intervention from President Rawlings and his 4th Republican government to the Article 71 Committee and formally approved by Parliament by consensus in the Committee s package.

It was one of the deep-thought-out steps intended to deepen political reconciliation and stabilize the 4th Republic.

Indeed, the award was retrospective to the 1st Republic to enable all ex-1st ladies to benefit.

The award was adjusted to cover the peculiar case of the 2nd Republic where Ghana had both a President ( Mr Akuffo Addo )  and a Prime Minister
(Dr K.A.Busia ).

1st ladies were placed on Deputy Minister’s level under the package .

I had the honor to search for Mrs Fathia Nkrumah/Mrs Busia / Mrs Akufo Addo / Mrs Faustina Acheampong /Mrs Akufo all former spouses of ex-head of state, personally briefed them and handed over accumulated back – pay to them.

Essentially victims of Ghana’s political history.
Of course,  Mrs. Rawlings as sitting 1st lady benefitted from same .
Other benefits included a little office and a car.
Unfortunately, we had little time to complete this exercise to decently rehabilitate these politically traumatized women .as pertains in other jurisdictions.

A Vice President was thought had an opportunity to become a President so the wives were not listed at the time .
Just in passing and for the records incumbent President Akufo Addo kindly arranged and sat in the meeting for the briefing and payment of the benefits to her great and wonderful mother .
I relied heavily on my very able Military Assistant Colonel Lawson who efficiently organized all the protocols.
I had the pleasure of carrying the deep appreciation of these long abandoned 1st ladies to President Rawlings and the PNDC cabinet.

2001 January 7th I personally handed over the file to my in-coming colleague Chief of Staff .Jake Obetsibi Lamptey  who was thrilled and surprised at the depth of work done . He promised to carry on this noble service . I know he started something.
I cannot speak to what happened thereafter.
I was and been happily out of public office  since then .
Yes , it was considered because we had the case of a 2nd wife pop  up (Mrs Kutu Acheampong).
Decision- Where there are more than one spouse , they share equally whatever is allocated to the office .
2nd lady is catered for whist in office hoping may graduate to 1st Lady .

2) The Committee makes its recommendations taking into account several factors including the existing wage /salary / emoluments in the public service generally .

This is  to ensure that the salaries and emoluments are not disproportionately higher than the mainstream wage /salary /emoluments.