Benjamin Mensah, GNA
Accra, June 30, GNA - Members of Parliament on both sides of the House, have expressed grief and shock over the death of former Vice President Kwesi Bekoe Amissah-Arthur.
“He was an epitome of humility,” “he was very approachable”; he had a very good sense of humour”, “he had paid his dues very well” “he was a gentleman to the core”, were some of the fond memories, recalled of the former Vice President, from later part of 2012 till January 6, 2017.
Mr. Amissah-Arthur is reported to have collapsed at the Air Force Gym early Friday and was rushed to the 37 Military Hospital where he was pronounced dead.
Ghanaians have expressed shock at the death of the former Vice President, and the sitting Parliament could not start, but being delayed as members in hush-hush voices discuss the sudden death of the 67-year old late academic, minister of state, economic consultant, sportsman and Governor the Bank of Ghana.
And parliamentary sitting for that, which normally starts at 1000 hours, had to be delayed till later to allow, members, especially from the Minority Caucus of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) to visit the family of the late Vice President, in Accra and share their initial commiserations.
Members of the august House recalled their memories of the former late Vice President with journalists.
Major (rtd) Derek Oduro, Deputy Minister for Defence and MP for Nkoranzah North, said “may he rest in peace, He exhibited a very good character in public life and service, and his death is not only a blow to the family, but the NDC and the whole nation. We wish him “damrifa due.”
Major Oduro recalled that the death of a former MP and Minister of Finance Kwadwo Baah Wiredu, as he stressed the need for public office holders to be cautious with their health and do regular medical checkups.
Dr Mrs Bernice Adiku Heloo, former Deputy Minister of Environment and Science, expressed shock at the death and extended condolences to the wife and children.
“It is a sad day for all of us. The former Vice President has paid his dues. I remember him for his humility; he was approachable, and had a good sense of humour. He was also not the type that was vociferous and attacking,” Mr Patrick Boamah, Deputy Minister for Sanitation and Water Resources and MP for Okaikoi Central said of the late former Vice President.
Ras Mubarak, MP for Kumbungu Constituency said the nation has lost a person who was an embodiment of humility, and the fact that there was no news of any sickness before the death of the late Vice President shows the fleeting nature of life
MP for Bia East Richard Acheampong was also shocked at the death, and noted he wait till the autopsy report was out.
He however advised that people above 40 years should engage in moderate but not stressful exercises.
The late Vice President, born on April 29, 1951, was an economist, academic and politician who was the sixth Vice-President of Ghana, he came into office from August 6, 2012, until January 7, 2017, under President John Dramani Mahama.
Previously he was Governor of the Bank of Ghana from 2009 to 2012.
He was sworn in as Vice-President on August 6, 2012, following vetting by the Parliament of Ghana.
He was nominated by President John Dramani Mahama to be the vice-president a week after Mahama himself was sworn in. This followed the sudden death of John Atta Mills on July 24, 2012.
Mr Amissah-Arthur was a research assistant at the Institute of Statistical, Social and Economic Research between 1974 and 1975.
He later joined the Economics Department as a teaching assistant from 1977 to 1978, going on to become an assistant lecturer in 1979. He lectured at the Department of Economics at the University of Ghana between 1980 and 1988.
He had also been a lecturer at the Department of Economics, Anambra State College of Education, Awka, Anambra State, Nigeria (August 1981 – July 1983).
He worked as a consultant for the World Bank in The Gambia. He also served as a consultant for the Netherlands' government education project in Ghana.
He then worked as Senior Economist for the Sigma One Corporation in Ghana between 1998 and 2000. Between 2001 and 2002, he was on assignment for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark.
From 1983 to 1986, Mr Amissah-Arthur served as a special assistant to the Secretary of Finance and Economic Planning, Kwesi Botchwey, in the Provisional National Defense Council government.
Subsequently, he was Deputy Secretary for Finance in the PNDC government from February 1986 to March 1993. From April 1993, he continued as the Deputy Minister for Finance in the Rawlings government after the establishment of constitutional rule until March 1997.
Mr Amissah-Arthur was appointed as Governor of the Bank of Ghana in October 2009 by President John Evans Atta Mills. He held this position until August 6, 2012, when he became Vice-President of Ghana following the death of President Mills.
Mr Amissah-Arthur was married to Matilda Nana Manye Amissah-Arthur with two children.
He is a Christian and is known to worship at the Calvary Methodist Church at Adabraka in Accra.