Assessment of ministerial nominees not partisan – Haruna Iddrisu

The Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu, has stated that assessments of the president’s nominees appearing before the Parliament Appointments Committee are not done on a partisan basis.

“The Appointments Committee is not the Minority Caucus nor is it just the Majority Caucus. It is just us working together to assess the ministers-designate,” Mr Iddrisu said at the committee’s sitting on Tuesday.

He hinted that the Minority Caucus committee members had not rejected the nomination of any of the president’s nominees as was previously reported.

“I don’t think people should conclude that there is some wrongdoing (on the part of some of the nominees) concluded by the Appointments Committee or an untoward issue,” the Minority Leader saidin parliament.

An earlier media report suggested that the Minority Members of Parliament (MPs) had rejected the nominations of Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, Minister-designate for Information; Hawa Koomson, Minister-designate for Fisheries and Aquaculture Development and Owusu Afriyie Akoto, Minister-designate for Food and Agriculture.

Five of the nominees, Kwaku Agyemang Manu, Minister-designate for Health, Ursula Owusu-Ekuful, Minister-designate for Communications; John Peter Amewu, Minister-designate for Railways; Kwesi Amoako-Atta, Minister-designate for Roads and Highways; and Godfred Yeboah Dame, the Minister-designate for Attorney-General and Justice had their approvals put on hold.

But Mr Iddrisu explained that the committee had some concerns against some of the nominees cited in its report during their vetting, which they should clarify.

He added that the Chairman of the committee, Joe Osei Owusu, would forward the specific concerns “that we have raised about them, and therefore when that is communicated, we will look at them.”

“We demand that somebody must be responsible for the procurement of Frontiers Healthcare Limited. We are still not getting satisfactory answers as to how the procurement process was done and completed,” Mr Iddrisu said.

He further refuted suggestions that the committee was taking decisions based on the perceived arrogance of some nominees.

“Let it not be said anywhere that the Appointments Committee, particularly led by the Minority, are assessing people based on whether they are arrogant or not. We are simply, in respect of some persons, demanding better particulars.”

The nominees with outstanding concerns are expected to return to the committee for an in-camera session.

Mr Osei Owusu, in his comments, criticised members of the committee who spoke out of tune on the vetting process.

He, however, did not mention specific members, who, he said, had misconducted themselves by discussing committee business in public.

Mr Osei Owusu reminded them that the role of the committee was to make recommendations to the plenary.

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