The Joe-Ghartey-chaired ad-hoc committee investigating the bribery allegation that has rocked Ghana’s Parliament, has cautioned the Member of Parliament for Bawku Central, Mahama Ayariga from making further comments on the issue on social media.
Mr. Ayariga, who has been vociferous and insistent on the fact that there was an attempt to bribe some minority MPs to be soft on the approval of Boakye Agyarko, Energy Minister during his vetting, has made a number of social media comments.
On Monday [February 20, 2017], after appearing before the investigative committee as a witness in the matter, the Chairman of the committee and Member of Parliament for Essikado-Ketan, Joe Ghartey, urged Mahama Ayariga, not to comment on the matter in the public domain.
He said the committee did not intend to gag him [Ayariga], but prefers he does not grant media interviews or make public comments about his testimony before the committee.
“We will be grateful if you don’t discuss what you said here or give commentary on either radio, television interviews or on social media. We are not gagging you; but we believe that we must all help to bring the work of the committee to a successful end, when we bring out our report, of course, you can comment, do you have any objections to that.”
Ayariga subsequently agreed to abstain from any such commentaries.
All other persons who appeared before the Committee today [Monday], including Boakye Agyarko, Energy Minister, the Minority Chief Whip, Muntaka Mubarak, and Okudzeto Ablakwa, were also given the same advice.
Weigh my evidence – Ayariga tells bribery committee
Speaking before the committee today; Mr. Ayariga asked the committee to evaluate his evidence in the matter and take the necessary decision.
Although he was unable to give the Committee what they deemed as substantial evidence to support his bribery claims, he stated that his allegations were the facts available to him. He therefore asked the committee to weigh his evidence and make a decision.
‘Constitution of ad-hoc committee’
The Speaker of Parliament, Prof. Mike Oquaye with the approval of the leadership of both sides of the House last month, constituted the ad-hoc committee to investigate the bribery allegation brought before the House by the Member of Parliament for Bekwai and Chairman of the Appointments Committee, Joe Osei Owusu who had been accused of being a conduit for giving some MPs on his committee GH¢ 3,000 each as bribe to approve the nomination of the Energy minister, Boakye Agyarko.
The members of the committee are the MP for Offinso South, Ben Abdallah; MP for Juaben, Ama Pomaah Boateng; MP for Talensi and MP for Yilo Krobo Magnus Kofi Amoateng.
It has Joe Ghartey, the Member of Parliament for Essikado-Kentan, who’s also the Minister for Railways Development as Chairman.
By: Jonas Nyabor/citifmonline.com/Ghana