Officials of the Ghana government are still furious about a tweet which they describe as disrespectful to the president, John Mahama. The tweet emanated from the country’s US Embassy twitter handle.
Recently, the president, who is a communications expert by profession, sent a tweet from his handle asking Ghanaians to remain calm and to sacrifice a little in these times of tough economic hardship, after he had made an earlier call to government officials to accept a salary cut.
@JD Mahama, “As a people, we have had to make sacrifices. I wish to assure you that the results of these sacrifices would begin to show very soon”, the tweet read.
Tweet from US Embassy Ghana
To this, a response came from the US Embassy’s official handle, which read:
“And what sacrifices are you making? Don’t tell me that pay cut.”
This infuriated not only government officials but a certain constituency of Ghanaians who found the tweet in bad taste, especially as it came from an official handle and that of of the US embassy no less.
Ras Mubarak, Coordinator of the Ghana Youth Authority wrote on his Facebook wall: “Those who want to be aloof can be aloof, but I will never watch unconcerned for the US or any country to disrespect my President, irrespective of which party is in govt.” He further prescribed a solution for what he considered a major consular goof. “The Minister of Foreign Affairs should summon the US Ambassador in Accra to explain and apologize for what could be described as a major blunder. To have the official US Embassy Twitter account respond to a tweet by our President in such saucy terms is shameful”.
The US Embassy in Accra has since come up with an apology and an explanation of the circumstances leading to the infamous tweet, with a promise of guarding against similar occurrences in future.
In a statement, the embassy clarified that the tweet was accidentally put out by one of its officials, and that neither the Embassy nor the US government had anything to do with it nor shared the sentiment. “The earlier errant tweet was a private message mistakenly sent out on our account. The views expressed in no way reflect the views of the United States Government or the US Embassy” it tweeted. “We have apologised to the President and we offer an apology to the Ghanaian people. Our staff mixed a personal handle with that of the embassy’s,” it added.
Not satisfied with the explanation however, Foreign Affairs Minister, Hannah Tetteh also replied the US Embassy tweet. “The tweet was public and associated with your twitter handle. It was not a private/personal account.” (Sahara Reporters)