POLITICS

Appointments Committee approves 22 ministers, eight pending

Twenty-two ministerial nominees of President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo have been unanimously approved by the Appointments Committee of Parliament, Asaase Radio’s parliamentary sources have confirmed.

Asaase Radio can also reveal that the committee wants clarification on five others while three may require majority decision via voting on the floor of Parliament.

Three on hold
According to Asaase Radio’s sources in Parliament and at the Office of the President, the Ministers-designate for Food and Agriculture, Dr Owusu Afriyie Akoto, Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah and Fisheries, Hawa Koomson, could not get the approval of all 26 members of the Appointments Committee and must secure approval through voting on the floor of Parliament.

The sources say, members of the minority side of the Appointments Committee accused Oppong Nkrumah, as being the one who called for a member of the legal team of the petitioner in the ongoing Election 2020 petition, Dr. Dominic Ayine, to be cited for contempt, after Ayine told the media on 16 February 2021, that the Supreme Court has a predetermined agenda to rule in favour of President Akufo-Addo.

In the case of the Minister for Food and Agriculture-designate, Kwaku Owusu Afriyie Akoto, members of the Minority side of the Appointments Committee accused him of being arrogant when he appeared before the committee and on that basis, they will not approve of his nomination.

On Koomson, the Minority side of the Appointments Committee, are of the opinion that she is not fit for the job.

Clarifications on five
Information available to Asaase News further suggests that the Minority side of the Appointments Committee will formally communicate to the appropriate authorities to indicate the clarifications they need with regard to the remaining five nominations of President Akufo-Addo.

It is believed that on the Roads and Highways portfolio, the clarification they may be seeking has to do with the Tema road contract, before they approve the nominee, Kwesi Amoako-Atta. The approval of the Minister-designate for Communications and Digitization, Ursula Owusu Ekuful, is also on hold because the Minority side says they require some clarification on the closure of some radio stations in the country.

The Health Minister-designate, Kwaku Agyeman-Manu‘s appointment, according to our source is on hold because the Minority side of the Appointments Committee say he did not satisfy them with his answers on questions regarding the engagement of Frontier to offer COVID-19 testing services at the airport some time in September 2020.

The Agyapa Gold Royalties deal and the answers given by the Minister for Justice and Attorney General-designate, Godfred Yeboah Dame, to questions posed by some members of the Appointments Committee ought to be clarified and to that end, the Attorney General’s nomination is also on hold, one source disclosed.

John Peter Amewu, the former Minister for Energy who supervised the PDS deal and has been nominated by the president to serve as the Minister for Railways Development in his second administration, has his approval also on hold. The minority side of the Appointments Committee say they require some clarification on some answers the minister-designate provided during his vetting on the PDS deal.

Joseph

Joseph Asare, a freelance journalist, a blogger and loves the internet

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