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Ayawaso West Wuogon MP rolls out free driving training for UG students

The Member of Parliament for the Ayawaso West Wuogon Constituency in the Greater Accra region, Lydia Seyram Alhassan will on Monday June 12, 2023 roll-out the second phase of a Free Driving Training Programme dubbed: ‘LSA Free Driving School’ targeted at students of the University of Ghana.

The tailor-made three weeks theoretical and practical free driving course will be centered at the university campus with flexible time schedules for the students to acquire driving skills at their own convenience without destructing their academic work.

Over 1000 students are expected to acquire free driving training skills during this second phase of the LSA Free Driving School Initiative.

Five hundred (500) residents of the constituency benefited from the first phase of the free driving school exercise held in 2022 held at Abelenkpe, in the Ayawaso West Wuogon constituency.

The LSA Free Driving School gesture is expected to be extended to other tertiary institutions including the Accra College of Education, University of Media, Arts and Communication, the Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration (GIMPA) all within the constituency.

The students target free driving lessons opportunity is the Phase two of the Free Driving courses rolled out by the philanthropic lawmaker.

Madam Lydia Seyram Alhassan who doubles as the First Deputy Majority Whip in Ghana’s Parliament has been engaged in numerous humanitarian interventions in her quest to make life more meaningful for her constituents and Ghanaians from all walks of life.

The MP recently celebrated mother’s day with women in the constituency and presented various gifts to them for their selflessness.


Hawa Koomson Inaugurates National Aquaculture and Commercial Farms

The Minister for Fisheries and Aquaculture Development, Hon. Mavis Hawa Koomson (MP), has on June 8, 2023, inaugurated the National Aquaculture and Commercial Farms.

The inauguration which took place at the project site in Amrahia in the Adentan Municipality of the Greater Accra region saw in attendance the president of the Republic, His Excellency Nana Akufo-Addo as the Special Guest of honour.

The facility comprises aquaculture indoor structures, classrooms, students and staff accommodation, mechanic workshop, packaging and cold storage facilities as well as constant power supply and parking lots.

The project is one hundred percent (100%) complete, and is set to transform aquaculture in the country, augment local fish production and reduce fish import.

The structure will also provide training and startup to over 300 Aquaculture entrepreneurs, as well as provide 50,000 metric tons of fish within the first year of establishment.

Irene Kwakye/Ghanamps.com

48 years on ECOWAS is more relevant than ever – former Community MP

Alumni of the Community Parliament and former member of Ghana’s delegation, Fredrick Opare-Ansah believes the bloc is still and more relevant than when its founding fathers established it forty-eight years ago.

The West African sub-regional bloc celebrated its forty-eighth (48) anniversary on May 28, 2023 and Mr. Opare-Ansah indicated that when one looks at the global stage and considers those gaining strengthen, be it economically, military wise or whatever, the numbers factor plays critical role.

President ECOWAS Commission

China, United States of America, India are all States with huge populations which is advantageous but the down side is that  in the ECOWAS sub-region, due to freedom of movement and its associated issues crime also moves across the sub-region a little bit more easily because we do not tighten our borders against each other’s citizens.

He also noted that because it is a bloc, when one country is going down it turns to pull the rest of the countries down, and cited the disturbances in Burkina Faso; a situation that compels Ghana to strengthen its border surveillance with that country which comes at a huge cost.

Similarly, when countries do well they pull others up, adding that when Nigeria, the power house in the sub-region eventually gets their acts right economically and security wise, “she is going to bring the rest of the sub-region up as they have by far the biggest population and more that fifty percent of the sub-regional population; they have vast resources too”.

 “So, we are all praying that Nigeria gets its act together, rise up as a giant as it, takes its rightful place, not only in Africa but on the global stage and the intended results would be the whole sub-region rising up with Nigeria”.

Still on the strength of Nigeria in the sub-region, he asserts that it took Nigeria to intervene to quench the fire in some conflicts in the sub-region including the Gambia.

Again, I was in Liberia during the ECOMOG days, and the role played by the Nigerian and Ghanaian military was phenomenal; so it’s clear that on the balance, where as some countries may have brought the sub-region down others are also pushing us up, whiles others have the potential to lift the entire sub-region out of its situation, he emphasised.

Kwaku Sakyi-Danso/Ghanamps.com

Asuogyaman MP cuts sod to construct 3-units teachers’ bungalow

The Member of Parliament for Asuogyaman constituency, Thomas Ampem Nyarko, has cut sod for the construction of teacher’s bungalow at Adjena Senior High Technical School (SHTS)

The project, which is to be fully funded by the MP, when completed, will accommodate three teachers in addition to the Headmistress who currently is the only staff with accommodation on campus.

The District Director of Education was very grateful to the Member of Parliament for the project and recounted the numerous educational interventions undertaken by the MP to lift the standard of Education in Asuogyaman including the supply of desks to Adjena SHTS at the beginning of this academic year.

According to the Assistant Headmaster of the School; Rev. Peter Brown, the project when completed will help improve upon supervision on campus after contact hours and curb the incidence of students breaking bounds, since currently, not even a housemaster is resident on campus.

The MP is hopeful that when the project is finally completed, it would help to improve educational performance in the school. There would be teachers to supervise prepping and other after school activities on campus.

He also recounted the numerous infrastructural developments the school saw during his tenure as DCE when President John Mahama was in power. “It is regrettable that, since the NPP government came to power, not even a grain of sand has been added as an infrastructural development here in this school”, he said.

The project which will be executed by EDMAT & SONS COMPANY, according to the contractor will be completed in three months’ time.


Election of ECOWAS MPs rests with the Commission—Opare-Ansah

Former Member of Parliament (MP) of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Parliament, Fredrick Opare-Ansah believes the work of electing lawmakers, rest largely on the bloc’s Commission.

Speaker Community Parliament

According to him the Authority of Heads of States and Governments come and go and the chairman of  Authority of Heads of States and Government who has one or two years  tenure would not have enough time for this process to see the light of the day.

He noted in an interview that the decision could take longer than the tenure of a chairman of the Authority of Heads of States, “even if someone did two terms, it will take longer than that to achieve that goal, so the most permanent of the bodies of the institution is the Commission”.

President ECOWAS Commission

“That is where the process has to be driven from; I believe that if they do go through all the motions for preparing for such a thing, whoever becomes chair of the Authority of Heads of States and Government would see reason in granting this particular thing”.

As to whether if Parliament gets its full legislative powers the issue of  subjecting the Commissioners activities to the Parliament is not another fear factor, he noted that they would have to be accountable; the Auditor has currently been elevated to the  level as the same as  commissioners which is a very high level. “So,  whatever you do, this audit will happen today or tomorrow,  someone can always commission an audit to be done to  events  of twenty years ago to look at what happen and so it’s an inevitable eventuality; its better now so that it helps the institution and the entire community to go forward at a faster rate”, he added.

Kwaku Sakyi-Danso/Ghanamps.com

Revised standing orders to be presented to the plenary in four weeks—Osei-Kyei

Majority Leader Osei Kyei Mensah-Bonsu has hinted that the revised standing orders being worked on by the House will be ready for the plenary for approval in four weeks.

He revealed this when leadership of the House had a media engagement on Wednesday, June 7, 2023 with members of the Parliamentary Press Corps (PPC).

According to him the committee working on the revision of the standing orders needs one more weekend to finalize its work and at the heart of it has to do with the Committee system as there is significant reduction on the numbers of the Committees as they have to recompose all the committees.

Majority Leader made this revelation when Ghanamps.com wanted to know the status of revision of the Standing Orders of Ghana’s Parliament, and emphasised the need to put the committees in place before the budget is presented in November 2023 so that those new committees will have their own orientation in other to be able to conform to the budget.

But again, two other issues that were forgotten to be included are awaiting his remarks, and he will do so when he receives them.

He added that the House is also contemplating the rout when they conclude; either to come by the route of Article 11 clause 7 of the 1992 constitution which requires it being a rule because the standing orders are rules of their own procedure which states: “Any order rule or regulation made by a person or authority under a power confer by this constitution or any other law shall be laid in parliament published in the guzzet ion the day its laid before parliament and come into force within twenty one seating days unless parliament annul it before the twenty one seating days come into force not less than two thirds of MPs”

According to him, he has suggested the resolution route and he is getting more support in that direction that the original orders were approved by a resolution in Parliament and not by the route of Article 11 clause 7; and it means any time they have proposed to amend the standing orders they do not come by the route of Article 11 clause 7.

“So we should not depart, we should have a resolution, so that in future if there is the cause to amend any provision it comes by the usual debate and amendment. We will get there and it should not be difficult.

Kwaku Sakyi-Danso/Ghanamps.com

“Ways and Means Committee in revised standing order is important”—Minority Leader

Minority Leader Dr. Cassiel Ato Forson has commended moves to get a new standing order in place by Ghana’s Parliament noting that it’s long overdue since the current one had been used for thirty years in the fourth Republican parliamentary democratic practice.

According to him one very important Committee that would be introduced is the “ways and means Committee”, and the revision of the Standing Order should be worked on speedily.

Dr. Ato Baah in a media engagement with members of the Parliamentary Press Corps (PPC) noted that there is the need to have a budget Committee for parliament to have its own budget office to regulate government budget, “so that, we can see the macro and micro impact of the budget. What would be the budget impact on inflation, public debt, to roads; and there is the need for a technical person to do such a work”.

“We have a small budget and the kind of lifestyle the current government is living over the period does not correspond to the budget that we have as a country; and so there is the need to do it; the new standing orders will create a budget committee apart from the finance committee”, he added.

Additionally, he noted that the committee would be tasked to look at the impact of the government economic policy and development. The Central Bank, he stated has a responsibility to assist in the development of the country through the banking system, but over the years “we do not have a dedicated committee to seat and ensure that they are implementing those functions; there is the need to have economic and development committee”.

He commended his colleague the Majority Leader for this move since he has known him he has been pushing for this new committee for Economic Development.

Kwaku Sakyi-Danso/Ghanamps.com

Parliament approves CJ nominee

Parliament has by consensus given prior approval to the President’s nominee Justice Gertrude Araba Esaaba Sackey Torkornoo as Chief Justice of the Republic of Ghana on Wednesday, June 7, 2023.

Presenting the report of the Appointments Committee to the House, the Chairman of the Committee, Joseph Osei Owusu noted that, the nominee showed character, competence and dexterity in the knowledge of law and pledged to interpret the law without fear or favour if approved as the Chief Justice of the Republic of Ghana.

Pursuant to the provisions in Article 144(1) of the 1992 Constitution and Standing Order 172 (2), the Appointments Committee considered H.E. the President’s nomination of Justice Gertrude Torkornoo as Chief Justice of the Republic of Ghana and answered various questions relating to her new position as the Chief Justice when approved.

The nominee also answered questions on the payment of emoluments to Judges, the Ghana School of law,demolition of Judges Bungalows, custodial sentencing and many others.

Prior to her approval on the floor, the Members of Parliament from both sides of the House debated the report of the Appointments Committee.

Most of the MPs who contributed to the motion were in favour of the Committee’s recommendation and subsequently voted for her approval.

The House is expected to communicate the approval of the nominee to the President for onward swearing –in as the Chief Justice of the Republic of Ghana.


Majority caucus will decide on “Ken must go” —Majority Leader

Majority Leader Osei Kyei Mensah-Bonsu said the caucus will decide on whether to revive their crusade on the sacking of the Finance Minister Ken Ofori Atta; an agitation that was started by some back benchers and later embraced by the entire Majority caucus.

Responding to questions from journalists during a media engagement on Wednesday, May 7, 2023, the Majority Leader asserts that the whole issue should be left for the caucus to determine.

“It has become the position of the whole group and they should be engaged to see what can be done going forward. It is only the madman who does not change his mind; if it becomes necessary they have to meet the president, it will happen”.

He further noted that sometimes it’s good to let sleeping dogs lie, and was quick to point out that the president said they should conclude negotiation with the IMF and that engagement has not come to an end.

“We are where we are and we would do it when it becomes necessary”, he said during the engagement

Kwaku Sakyi-Danso/Ghanamps.com

Electing ECOWAS MPs will happen in the near future—Opare-Ansah

A two term former member of Ghana’s delegation to the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), Parliament Fredrick Opare-Ansah is confident the Parliament will see its members being elected by universal adult suffrage in the near future.

According to him the sub-regional member states will achieve that and pointed out that the East African Legislative Assembly (EALA) has shown the way by electing its members directly.

“It’s important because there are issues which are of community interest especially the direction we are heading right now, where because of the issues of ICT your borders are becoming almost nonsensical”.

He explained that with ICT and technology, one can seat in Togo, Nigeria or Burkina Faso and have an IP address in Ghana and do things as if the person is in Ghana.

And if the person is in Ghana and want to commit a crime in another sub-regional country, the person can easily do that, “so when you do not have a legislative body which has this kind of interest and dealing with the common issues it could pose a problem”.

Mr. Opare-Ansah further noted that European Union (EU) has been able to address some issues in that regard because of their strengthens and commonality of the laws, the EU Parliament has enacted laws to deal with that.

And recounted that whiles in the Community Parliament one of the things he pushed for which eventually got somewhere was the issue of roaming and added that going for a session in Abuja Nigeria one has to carry SIM cards – Glo along likewise other countries.

“We have eventually enacted laws and Ghana has done it, when I was chairman of the communications committee, we passed our laws here which enables me now to land in any of the ECOWAS countries to use my Ghana SIM card on the local networks and get charged what the citizens pay in a member states without going to pay roaming charges”.

As to whether this laudable idea is actually working in the member states of the West African sub-region, he responded by saying that it is important that all member states domesticate these laws after the protocols are signed by Authority of Heads of States and Governments at their summits.

“If Ghana’s president goes out and sign this in a summit and comes back and the Communications Minister in Ghana does not take it upon herself to come to Parliament with it to get a law enacted on it, how would telecommunications in Ghana work on this?” He queried.

He noted that it will only come back to the same point, if it does not get domesticated; adding that local networks would not comply until the domestic laws force them to do so; and Ghana has enacted a low to this effect. When you land in Ghana for 90 days you are free to make calls from a members states of ECOWAS and get charged as you pay back home.

He emphasized further that if the Community Parliament has its own remit and makes laws like EALA, it gets gazzeted and takes effect because automatically the member states domesticate laws made by the regional bloc.

Kwaku Sakyi-Danso/Ghanamps.com