Ken Ofori-Atta, Deputies ‘force’ Parliament To Suspend Proceedings For An Hour

The absence of Finance Minister Ken Ofor- Atta and his deputies in Parliament Wednesday morning forced House to suspend sitting for an hour.

The minister and his three deputies were expected to be in the House to help members of parliament consider the taxation (use of fiscal electronic device) bill 2017, which is currently at the consideration stage.

Per parliamentary rules, when a bill is being considered, the sector minister and or any of his deputies is required to be present.

However, when it got to the agenda of the bill, the minority chief whip, Muntaka Mohammed Mubarak brought to the attention of the House that the ministers were absence as none of them were seen in the House at the time

Majority chief whip Ameyaw Cheremeh agreed with the MP, and suggested to the House to suspend proceedings to allow the ministers to show up.

The Speaker accordingly suspended sitting and asked the majority side of the House, who are in charge of government business, to call the ministers to come to Parliament.

As at 1:00pm, proceedings had resumed and Deputy Finance Minister Kwaku Kwarteng had arrived to represent the sector minister.

Meanwhile, the report of the Committee on Subsidiary Legislation on the legal profession (regulations, 2018; L. I. 2355) which was to be laid before the House had to be stood down for some time as the Chairman of the Committee, Mahama Ayariga had stepped out of the House when it came up.

Though he was present few in the House minutes before the item was called by the Speaker, he was not available to lay it.

Minority chief whip, Muntaka Mubarak explained Mr Ayariga had stepped out stepped out to do some few corrections in the report.

Earlier in the morning before it got to the agenda of the taxation bill, the Interior Minister, Ambrose Dery was in the House to answer questions on when the Comptroller -General of the Ghana Immigration Service will restore the work and residence permits of Ashock Sivaram, an Indian businessman, as ruled by the Accra High Court.

Mr. Dery in his response said matter was in still in court. The MPs agreed and no follow up questions were asked.

Also, Gender Minister, Otiko Djaba was also in the House to answer questions on the rape of a four- year old girl at Assin Adadiete, primarily on what steps she has taken for the victim to get justice.

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