Minority caucus protests

Osei Kyei Mensah Bonsu,Minority Leader (1)The Minority caucus has expressed its disgust at what it termed “unilateral decisions” being taken by the outgoing John Mahama’s Administration to have Parliament approve loans, Supplier’s Credit Agreement and Project Implementation Agreements “in this period of transition.”

According to the Minority, Parliament, in the spirit of the Presidential Transition Act 2016, should have been furnished by now with handing-over notes of the Presidency, Ministries, Departments and Agencies in order to determine outstanding businesses to conduct during the transition.

At a press conference in Parliament yesterday, the Minority Leader, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, said they “cannot be part of processes and decisions which in our considered opinion, are illegitimate.”

According to him, handing-over notes covering the state of affairs of the country should have been handed over to the Administrator-General “not later than thirty days before the date of the presidential election” for onward delivery to Parliament.

He said Parliament, under the Act, was required to be served with copies of handing-over notes and projections of government as expressed in the handing-over notes submitted to Parliament.

But at the time of the press conference, he said the House had not been presented with handing over notes from the Administrator-General covering the activities of the Presidency and the Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs), neither had it been given any reports relating to projections of developments that government envisaged in the transition period.

The Minority Leader said without the reports on the accurate developments which had taken place under President John Mahama and a clear statement on what was projected to be done, “Parliament cannot, suo moto, decide on which business to transact, including the approval of new loans.”

He was of the view that in the absence of such “accurate handing-over notes and reports to Parliament,” the outgoing government would have resorted to consensus building with the incoming NPP administration to have all grey areas covered”.

Mr. Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu also questioned the reported new recruitments into the public service against an International Monetary Fund agreement with the government to freeze employment into the service, saying the recruitments were done in bad faith.

“These spirited attempts to have Parliament approve of loans in the ‘injury-time’ of President John Mahama’s administration do not inure to good democratic governance.

“The government would be better advised to be open and transparent and build consensus and carry the entire nation along in these last days to avoid a situation where the next succeeding administration would be forced to review these acts of the out-going government,” he stated.

He reiterated the call for national reconciliation by the President-elect, Nana Akufo-Addo, and said that, that ought to be the foundation for transparent and accountable governance and not events that have unfolded over the past few days.

The National Democratic Congress and the New Patriotic Party (NPP), in a characteristic manner, have engaged in the blame game following the inauguration of the Presidential Transition Team to take over political power after the NPP’s victory in the 2016 general elections.

While the outgoing government believes some new appointments, recruitment, and loan agreement were being done in tandem with their mandate, the opposition is of the view that it was doing these to tie down the hands of the incoming government.

Some of these new actions include the appointment of Chairpersons for the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice and the National Commission for Civic Education and a 40 per cent allowance rise for National Service Personnel.

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