8-member committee to probe allegations against Ofori-Atta amid censure threats

Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta

Parliament has constituted an eight-member ad-hoc committee to investigate allegations for the motion of censure raised by the Minority Caucus against the embattled Minister of Finance, Ken Ofori-Atta.

Speaker of Parliament Alban Bagbin believes, setting up the committee will provide an opportunity for the Finance Minister to respond to issues of conflict of interest raised by the Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu.

“The evidence will be placed before the committee. The Minister will have the opportunity to defend himself. A report will be presented to the House, and we will debate that report,” the Speaker of Parliament Alban Bagbin said.

NDC Member of Parliament for Bolgatanga East, Dominic Ayine, and NPP MP for Adansi-Asokwa KT Hammond will co-chair the committee and will have to present their report to the House in Seven (7) days.

The committee will be made up of Eight (8) members with four (4) from each side of the House.

Bagbin made the ruling after the Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu, moved the motion for the vote of censure against Mr Ofori-Atta on the Floor of the House on Thursday, November 10, 2022.

According to Haruna Iddrisu, the record inflation rate, the depreciation of the cedi, the excessive borrowing and the reckless spending, and the failure to control fuel prices are clear indications that the Finance Minister is not fit to continue in his role.

The Tamale South MP added that “Ghana’s economy is currently in a ditch” and called on the Majority side of the House to join the motion to remove the Finance Minister to regain the confidence of investors and save the economy from total collapse.

But the call by the Minority Leader was turned down by the Majority side, with the Deputy Majority Leader, Alexander Afenyo-Markin stating the call by the Minority Leader is in bad faith and not procedural.

According to him, issues raised by the Minority Leader border on criminality. He said Parliament cannot arrogate to itself judicial powers to try the Finance Minister, and called on the Speaker to allow Mr. Ofori-Atta to defend himself before any decision is made.

The Majority caucus in Parliament had earlier indicated their unwillingness to back the Minority’s vote of censure against the Finance Minister.

At a press conference held Thursday morning, the Majority group led by the MP for Effiduase/Asokore, Nana Ayew Afriyie said despite the fact that they still stand by their decision for the Finance Minister to be removed, they refuse to support the motion by the Minority.

“We are not going to support the course of the NDC this morning. The course of the NDC is premised on falsehood, propaganda, and reasons which are not justifiable. Their position might look like ours, but ours is different,” Ayew Afriyie said.

SOURCE: citinewsroom.com contributed to this story

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