Dr Grace Bediako

Information filtering in to DAILY GUIDE indicates that the embattled Government Statistician, Dr. Grace Bediako, who resumed work after a long leave on Wednesday, has finally been axed from her position at the Ghana Statistical Service (GSS).

Sources from the GSS hinted that Dr. Bediako?s new task would be at the National Development Planning Commission (NDPC) chaired by Paul Victor Obeng, where she would serve as a consultant.

It appears that this was the final decision arrived at during a snap board meeting of the GSS on Wednesday when Dr. Bediako showed up for work.

The latest decision puts to rest festering speculations about the future of the beleaguered Government Statistician, following the GSS board?s January 2012 order for her to proceed on leave.

Critics cited her new responsibility as being akin to relegation to ?Siberia?, where nothing really challenging was happening.

Even Dr. Bediako herself was unsure about her future in the scheme of things as she admitted to DAILY GUIDE that she was yet to come to terms with her new role as a consultant to the NDPC.

?By next week, things would be clearer,? she simply told DAILY GUIDE when contacted on Thursday.

Dr. Bediako has been extremely instrumental in the completion of the 2010 Population and Housing Census and hailed as one of the very hardworking Government Statisticians.

However, just when she was collating the final figures for the census, the Mills government forced her to exit her post under mysterious circumstances.

In her stead, Dr. Philomena Nyarko was pulled from about two rungs down the hierarchy and placed at the helm of affairs at the GSS.

The turn of events at the GSS raised widespread discontent among staff and some civil society groups.

Several civil society groups, including the Danquah Institute, complained that Dr. Bediako was probably hounded out of office to give way for the Mills government to allegedly manipulate the census figures.

However, Chairman of the GSS?s board, Prof. Francis Dodoo, in a January 2012 press statement, explained that Dr. Bediako was asked to step aside because of ?poor delivery? of managing a $17million statistical fund provided by a combination of development partners such as the UK DFID, the World Bank and the European Union.

On Wednesday, Dr. Bediako surfaced at the GSS after her five-month leave elapsed.

The entire GSS was taken unawares by her resumption; this pitted her directly against the Acting Government Statistician, causing a leadership dilemma.

In bewildered haste, the board of the GSS convened a meeting and decided on which of the two heads could be disposed of.

Critics said the reassignment of Dr. Bediako as a consultant for the NDPC was a nice way to state that she had been sacked.

By Raphael Adeniran

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