March 20, 2017

The Minority NDC Caucus in Parliament are fuming with rage the delay in submitting to the House the budget estimates of the various Ministries for consideration and subsequent approval.

Parliament was scheduled to begin considering the budget estimates for the various ministries on Monday, March 20, 2017.

However, at the commencement of Government Business, Members were told most of the estimates were not ready.

Deputy Majority Leader, Sarah Adwoa Safo, who led the House to conduct Government Business then prayed to the Speaker to direct Members to break into committees and consider the budget estimates for fifteen Ministries which were available and report to the plenary accordingly.

She therefore, pleaded with the Speaker to adjourn sitting to Tuesday, March 21, 2017 at 10:00 in the forenoon.

But her directive came to the Minority as a surprise.

The Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu wondered why the House will choose to sit on Monday, March 20, 2017, when the budget estimates for the various ministries were not ready.

“My Speaker, to remind us, we have only up to March 30, 2017 for the approval which was given in lieu of the appropriation to last. Therefore, we need to work to ensure that we are able to approve the appropriation on or before March 30, 2017, as the Majority Leader stated the last time. Mr. Speaker, we will be guided by you adjourning us but for the leadership to ensure that the estimates for the various ministries are made available for the committees to work much more effectively,” he noted.

Speaker, Rt. Hon. Prof. Aaron Michael Oquaye responding to the issue told Members that “the vast majority of the estimates have been laid at the Table Office and are available for the various Chairpersons of the committees to collect for consideration.”