December 15, 2021

The Minority Members of Parliament on the Communications Committee on Tuesday, December 14, 2021 morning arrested the processes of considering the budget estimate for the Ministry of Communication and Digitalisation for the year 2022 until the annual audited National Communication Authority (NCA) report for three years is produced.

Member of Parliament (MP) for Bunkpurugu Abed-Nego Bandim raised initial objection as the Minister failed to comply with her own agency Act, section 23 of Act 739 which says, “annual report and other reports the board shall within one month after the receipt of the audit report submit an annual report to the Minister covering the operations of the year to which the report was laid and shall contain the report in the schedule Act. The Minister shall within one month after receiving the report submit it to Parliament in a statement that the Minister consider necessary”.

At a press conference addressed by the Deputy Rankin of the Committee Samuel George Nartey noted that the Ministry has not brought six years of annual audited report to the floor of the House and they find it contradictory.

And on that basis could not continue with the consideration of the estimate until the 2015, 2016 and the 2017 annual report was provided to be laid before the House.

Additionally, by Friday, December 17, 2021 the reports of 2018 and 2019 annual report should be provided while January of 2022 that of the report of 2020 should be complied with by NCA.

“We have issues with several agencies have not provided their annual audited report. NITA for a number of years and Data protection commission for instance”.

And added that, Mr. Speaker’s committee is poised to carry out their oversight responsibility without fear or favour; they would insist that the right things according to the law are done. If the reports do not come, they would not continue with the consideration of her estimates, when six years in running they have failed to account to the people of Ghana whose taxes, “we have been approving, if this was your business for your company, you would demand accountability”, he lamented.

During question time wanted to know if Members of the Minority especially the Ningo-Prampram lawmaker would come out with the same energy to play oversight role when his party finds itself in government.

He responded by saying when they were previously in government they comply with this annual report provision and briefed the Committee.

Again, they explained that they did not walk out of the committee, rather it was the chairperson who insisted that there should be suspension for one hour for an annual report to be provided when questioned if they walked out at the Committee meeting.

Kwaku Sakyi-Danso/