November 23, 2023

Member of Parliament for Tamale South Haruna Iddrisu raised serious concerns over the absence of any representative from the Ministry of Finance on the floor of the House during the second day of debate on the 2024 economic policy of the Akufo-Addo led government.

According to him he is aware the Finance Minister Ken Ofori Atta is outside the country to deal with Ghana’s multilaterals on the country’s debt restructuring, but there are two deputies on at the Ministry of Finance and a Minister of State.

He was however quick to point out to the House that Abena Osei Asare is usually on the floor of the House to do business on behalf of the Ministry.

He further pointed out to the speaker that the second day of debate should not start if none of the representatives of the Ministry is on the floor of the House. He also urged the Majority Leader to ensure that there is focus on government business on the floor of the House.

“I am aware one of the deputy ministers of finance is competing with him but the Majority Leader would get what he is competing for. He would get there; we would help you with prayers, but focus on parliament”. (He side in the wake of the name of John Kumah pupping out as a possible running mate to Dr. Bawumia).

Mr. Iddrisu further noted that Parliament’s work as oversight on the budget is a very important function, and Ghanaians want Parliament to control the public purse and supervise it well for their good.

Mr. Iddrisu added that in the days of late Kwadwo Baah-Wiredu, he never missed the opportunity to be in Parliament, same with Seth Terkper who did well to be showing up sometimes on the floor.

He affirmed that the points they raise on the floor are not raised just for nothing, “we want improvement on economic governance and management.

Minority Leader Dr Ato Forson made an appeal for the debate of the budget to be carried on because there were visitors in the public gallery who wanted to listen to the major issue like the 2024 budget.

He added that it cannot be said that there is not representative from the finance ministry so the debate cannot continue and rather arrangements should be made to get any of the deputies to the floor for business to start.

Rt. Hon Alban Kingsford Sumana Bagbin had to allow a statement to be made on the floor of the House, while the House awaits the appearance of any of the deputy Ministers of Finance or the Minister of State at the Finance Ministry for the debate to start.

Kwaku Sakyi-Danso/