Parliament’s Appointment Committee has approved five other Ministerial nominees, bringing the total number of approved nominees to thirteen.
The latest to be approved are Senior Minister Nominee; Osafo Maafo , Energy Minister Nominee; Boakye Agyarko, Education Minister Nominee; Matthew Opoku Prempeh,Minister Nominee for Health, Kwaku Agyeman-Manu and Owusu Afriyie Akoto, Minister Nominee for Agriculture.
Why Minority resisted Agyarko, Osafo Maafo’s approval
The Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu, had earlier explained that, they needed some “additional information” on statements Osafo Maafo and Boakye Agyarko both made before the Committee during the vetting.
He said Mr. Agyarko provided some “inaccurate” information relating to the “debt associated with the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) and the Volta River Authority (VRA).”
But Citi News’ Duke Mensah Opoku reported that Agyarko subsequently withdrew some of his comments, prompting the committee to approve him by consensus.
He added that Mr. Osafo Maafo however stood by his comments but provided additional information to support his claim and was therefore recommended for approval by consensus.
Ayariga accuses Agyarko of bribery
Their approval came hours after a member of the Minority in Parliament, Mahama Ayariga, accused Boakye Agyarko of attempting to bribe them, ostensibly to have his nomination approved.
Speaking on Accra based Radio Gold, a member of the Appointment’s Committee, Mahama Ayariga, who made the allegation, said Mr. Agyarko attempted bribing them with 3,000 cedis .
The Bawku Central Legislator believes the money was specifically intended to influence the minority to approve Agyarko’s nomination.
“This [Friday] morning, we had a meeting and during the meeting, we raised the issue with our Chief Whip and asked him what was the source of the money and he said he was going to check from the Chairman because he had also assumed that it was the sitting allowance that he had given him to give to us. So he raised the issue this morning again and he said he had met with the Chairman, and the Chairman had said it was from Boakye Agyarko, who is a nominee. So we as Minority said we were not interested in the money. He should take the money and then return it to the Chairman to give it back to Agyarko. So we gave the money back to our Chief Whip and asked him to send it back to give it to Mr. Agyarko.”
Asked what for what purpose he believes the money was given, Mr. Ayariga said that, “The only logical conclusion one could arrive at is that, this is money intended to influence especially when we had withheld his approval based on certain grounds; so we took a decision that we are not taking anything from anybody. We will take our normal sitting allowances as a committee, and so our leader should be mindful anytime the Chairman brings any money.”
But the Chairman of the Committee, Joe Osei-Wusu, has denied playing any role in the alleged bribery, and has vowed to take up the matter at the appropriate quarters.
By: Marian Ansah/citifmonline.com/Ghana