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The 3rd Sermon: Ofori-Atta expected in parliament today

Source The Ghana Report

The Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin, has directed Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, to appear before Parliament for the third time in succession after failing to show up in previous summons.

Mr Ofori-Atta is expected to answer some 16 urgent questions tabled by members of the house.

The 1st sermon

The Minority Chief Whip, Muntaka Mubarak entreated the first Deputy Speaker of Parliament to issue definite instructions to Mr  Ofori-Atta after he failed to appear before Parliament to answer the questions.

The minister who was scheduled to answer over 10 questions on different subject matters on Thursday, 24 March 2022,  did not show up at the house.

Raising concerns on the floor, Muntaka said the minister had consistently failed to honour parliament’s invitation to answer the questions, some of which have been pending for a long time.

“I find this to be very unacceptable because the Finance Minister can go around the country and do town hall meetings, yet he doesn’t want to come here to answer to the reps of the people. All the 16 questions have been outstanding for a very long time. We are told he is holding a press conference to address the country. My worry is that, if we keep accommodating his excuses, these questions will never be answered. We should give a definite instruction to the Finance Minister to come and answer the questions,” he said.

Other minority members described the minister’s posture as disrespectful.

The 2nd Sermon

On 27 May 2022, Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin, placed a moratorium on the approval of a 75 million euro loan for COVID-19 Response contracted from the European Investment Bank by the government of Ghana.

The Speaker said this will be in place until the Minister for Finance accounts for the utilization of funds approved so far for the government.

“The Ministry of Finance must appear before the house and give an account of all the monies that it has gotten for the management of COVID-19. Only after that will this house consider approving or otherwise another loan.”

He made the remarks in Parliament when the motion for the loan was tabled in the house.

The 3rd Sermon

The Speaker was forced again to issue another directive to Mr Ofori Atta to appear before Parliament today Wednesday, 22 June 22o2, or face his wrath.

This will be the third time Parliament will be summoning Finance Minister to the house to answer the same 16 pending questions from MPs.

Mr. Alban Bagbin, speaking on the floor of the House on Thursday, 16 June 2022 said the Minister must appear before the House or suffer the rejection of requests from the Finance Ministry.

Mr. Bagbin has ruled that the House will not consider any requests from the Finance Ministry until Ken Ofori-Atta appears before the House to account for Covid-19 expenditure and answer other questions from MPs.

Here are the 16 questions Ofori-Atta is expected to answer in Parliament today.

Mr. Godfred Seidu Jasaw (Wa East): To ask the Minister for Finance when the Ministry will issue financial clearance to the Ministry of Food and Agriculture to clear the large debt owed partners and suppliers to ensure the availability of subsidised fertilizer in this farming season.

Ms. Sheila Bartels (Ablekuma North): To ask the Minister for Finance about the current status of funding for the construction of Phase Two of the Tema Motorway, which has been highlighted as a major issue for commuters.

Mr. Sylvester Tetteh (Bortianor-Ngleshie Amanfro): To ask the Minister for Finance about the interventions the Ministry is employing to clamp the sustained increments in fuel prices as witnessed in the recent pricing windows.

Mr. Edward Abambire Bawa (Bongo): To ask the Minister for Finance what the Ministry is doing with respect to imposed taxes and levies on petroleum products and the depreciation of the Cedi to slow down the increases in prices of petroleum product prices at pumps.

Mr. Vincent Oppong Asamoah (Dormaa West): To ask the Minister for Finance whether the Ministry would consider sourcing additional funding for infrastructural development at the University of Energy and Natural Resources (UENR) in Sunyani just like it was done in respect of the University of Health and Allied Sciences (UHAS) in Ho, the University of Environment and Sustainable Development at Somanya, and recently for the proposed university at Bunso.

Mr. George Kweku Ricketts-Hagan (Cape Coast South): To ask the Minister of Finance which companies were used as Local Transaction Advisors and Local Legal Advisors for the 2021 Eurobond, and how much were they paid in fees as individual companies.

Mr. George Kweku Ricketts-Hagan (Cape Coast South): To ask the Minister of Finance how much the Government has realised (net proceeds) from the Eurobond issued in 2021, and how much it has spent on fees and related roadshow expenses.

Mr. Murtala Muhammed Ibrahim (Tamale Central): To ask the Minister of Finance how much revenue the State generated from the sale of power to neighbouring countries.

Ms. Theresa Lardi Awuni (Okaikwei North): To ask the Minister of Finance how much was raised in total from Government Bonds since 2017; who the transaction advisors and book runners were since 2017, and how was paid to each of the transaction advisors and book runners since 2017.

Mr. Frank Annoh-Dompreh (Nsawam-Adoagyiri): To ask the Minister of Finance how the 2022 budget will ensure that all the major issues of increased taxes, increased fuel prices and unmaintained roads which were raised during the course of 2021 will be tackled efficiently.

Dr. Stephen Amoah (Nhyiaeso): To ask the Minister of Finance about the plans the Government has established through the Ministry of Finance to reduce the debt stock which stood at 76.1% in the first half of this year.

Mr. Kwadjo Asante (Suhum): To ask the Minister for Finance if the Government, through the Ministry’s work plan, intends to return to the International Monetary Fund for financial assistance.

Mr. Collins Adomako-Mensah (Afigya Kwabre North): To ask the Minister of Finance what assurance the Ministry can give in response to the widely held concern that Government has abandoned projects started by previous administrations.

Ms. Dakoa Newman (Okaikwei South): To ask the Minister of Finance the progress and impact of the Ghana CARES programme as well as the plans to raise a US$100 Billion fund through a Government-Private collaboration, all aimed at revitalizing the economy, post COVID-19.

Mr. Frank Annoh-Dompreh (Nsawam-Adoagyiri): To ask the Minister of Finance how much has been invested in fighting COVID-19 and what gains are attributable to the investments made so far in respect of economic recovery.

Mr. Paul Apreku Twum-Barimah (Dormaa East): To ask the Minister of Finance what measures the Ministry has in place to ensure that the creation of one (1) million jobs stated in the mid-year budget is achieved, in light of the current indication that the Government payroll is full.

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