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Kojo Oppong Nkrumah
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The Appointments Committee of Parliament will tomorrow start vetting President Akufo-Addo’s nominees for various ministerial positions following his last cabinet reshuffle.

Those to be vetted tomorrow are the Minister-designate for Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, who is also the New Patriotic Party (NPP) Member of Parliament for Ofoase/Ayirebi, Minister-designate for Gender, Children and Social Protection, Cynthia Morrison, who is also the NPP MP for Agona West and Minister-designate for the Upper East region, Paulina Tangaba Abayage, immediate-past Ghana’s Ambassador to Italy.

The vetting would continue on Monday, October 29, and those to be vetted are Minister-designate for the Brong Ahafo Region, Evans Opoku Bobie, who is the current Deputy Brong Ahafo Minister and NPP MP for Asunafo South; Deputy Minister-designate for Brong Ahafo Region, Martin Oti Gyako, who is the NPP MP for Techiman North, and Deputy Minister-designate for the Eastern Region, Samuel Nuertey Ayertey.

The names of the nominees were referred to the Appointments Committee when the Speaker of Parliament recalled the House for a five-day emergency sitting.

After the names were referred to the Appointments Committee, the Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu, who is member of the Committee, could not fathom why the current Brong Ahafo Regional Minister, Kwaku Ansomah-Cheremeh, would be made to take up his new portfolio at the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources without going through parliamentary vetting.

He argued that since the current Brong Ahafo Regional Minister represented the president in the region and now moving to a substantive sector ministry, he should have been vetted and approved by parliament.

He revealed that it was important for parliament to vet him to test his knowledge of the new ministry and find out whether he is competent to handle that ministry well.

The Majority Leader, Osei Kyei Mensah-Bonsu, disclosed that technically the Minority Leader was right because parliament must interrogate the nominee on workings of the new ministry.

“The constitution says that the president can reshuffle his ministers of state at any point in time after going through their initial vetting by parliament, and that regional ministers are also categorised as ministers of state under the constitution.

He said since he entered parliament in 1997 that has always been the practice by all presidents who sometimes reshuffle regional ministers to become sector ministers because the 1992 Constitution permits that.

He said personally he raised the issue in the House when he was the Minority Leader.

“Technically it was right for parliament to vet them before being appointed sector ministers to verify, if indeed, they have the competence to handle those ministries effectively.

He said the time has come for Parliament to look at that provision in the constitution.

The Minister of Evaluation and Monitoring, Dr Anthony Akoto Osei, said becoming a sector minister or minister of state does not require any extraordinary qualification since the person only has to be a good manager and give effective directions to his technocrats to get things done.

Meanwhile, Parliament would officially resume on Tuesday, October 30 for a hectic third meeting of the second session of the Seventh Parliament, with the 2019 Budget Statement being the main item on the agenda for the meeting.
Source: Daily Guide

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