Bagbin puts Finance Ministry business on hold over Ofori-Atta’s refusal to appear before Parliament

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The Speaker of Parliament, Alban Sumana Bagbin, has put on hold all business from the Finance Ministry, until the sector Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, answers all pending questions, and a COVID-19 Expenditure statement is delivered.

“Until we go through the accountability process, we will not take that motion… Today, he has another request before us. That will also be affected.”

“Until he comes to respond to the questions and to submit the statement giving an explanation as to how the money has been applied, we will not entertain any business from that Ministry,” Mr. Bagbin said.

Already, a 75 million Euro facility for a COVID-19 response program has been suspended pending the delivery of the account statement to the house.

The Minister was scheduled to answer questions and deliver an important statement on the floor on Thursday before he put in a late request for the session to be postponed.

The Minister has 16 questions to answer on a number of issues, including the utilization of COVID-19 funds.

The Majority Leader, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu came to the defence of the Minister following the postponement of the session.

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According to Mr. Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, Mr. Ofori-Atta was yet to go over the responses to the question he was expected to deliver in Parliament.

“He pleaded that he should see them [the questions] first, read them and appreciate what the technical people have brought and if there are any other matters to be added on, he does so become to this House so that he will be able to give a comprehensive response.”

The Majority Leader also stressed that Mr. Ofori-Atta was not running away from the questions.

“For anybody to jump to the conclusion that the minister is running away from responsibility, I shudder to think of how that is coming about.”

Mr. Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu said it has been recommended that the Finance Minister appear before Parliament on Wednesday, June 22.

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