September 16, 2019

Former chairman of the Finance Committee in the sixth Parliament of the fourth Republic of Ghana, Dr. James Kluste Avedzi is advocating for resources and equipment to the Legislative arm of government.

According to the Deputy Minority Leader when the Legislature is well resourced and equipped, that is when it can play its oversight responsibility over the Executive arm of government properly.

As to whether the Executive arm of government should not be blamed for ensuring that the legislature is weak, he noted that the Legislature should blame itself for not approving enough funds to equip itself to perform its function properly.

He again pointed out that anytime annual budget is presented by the Executive and estimates referred to the sector committees it is not every Member of Parliament who has the capacity to analyze the figures to know what really the various Ministries want to do and achieve.

For instance, if the Ministry of Education tells lawmakers that with this amount of funds or figures they would be able to achieve A B C, and MPs do not have the capacity to analyze the information they have provided, “we would end up accepting whatever they tell us”.

“So that is the more reason why we need a budget office as a House, with Parliamentary Budget Officers. When we have them MPs who are not financially inclined would have good information and well-equipped to question officers who would be coming from the Ministries on information and figures they churn out on the budget”.

Kwaku Sakyi-Danso/