If Report Is Not Credible We Won’t Put It Out – Joe Ghartey

The Chairman of Parliament’s bribery Investigative Committee has said Ghanaians will find the report credible because the investigations were conducted in a non-partisan manner.

Joe Ghartey told the media Thursday, the Committee members did their best to independently interrogate claims made by the witnesses who appeared before them “without fear or favour.”

“We are not perfect, we are not God but we [did] our work. If it is not credible [we] will not put it out,” he said.

Parliament is scheduled to commence debate on the report of the Joe Ghartey Committee which was set up to investigate a bribery allegation made by Bawku Central Member of Parliament (MP), Mahama Ayariga.

The legislator told journalists the National Democratic Congress (NDC) members on the Appointments Committee were given GHC3,000 each by Minority Chief Whip, Mohammed Muntaka.

Mr Ayariga said they later returned the money after they were told it was given to the Appointments Committee by then Energy Minister-designate Boakye Agyarko whose nomination was being considered.

First Deputy Speaker Joe Osei Owusu was said to have delivered the money to Mr Muntaka. He has refuted the claim describing it as lies concocted to tarnish his reputation.

Speaker of Parliament Professor Mike Aaron Ocquaye set up a five-member Special Committee to investigate the claim. The Committee was given a month to finish its work.

However, after close to two months of cross-checking the veracity of the claim, the Joe Ghartey Committee laid its report before Parliament Wednesday.

Majority leader, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu told Joy News copies of the 56-page report would be made to the MPs to inform their discussion Thursday.

Joy News sources have revealed that although copies of the report have been made, they are yet to be handed to the legislators. This has heightened the apprehension of MPs over the conclusion of the report.

Mr Ghartey who is the MP for Esikado constituency said they are jealously guarding the report from leaking because of the nature of the issue in question.

“The matter is serious that without me nobody can go for a copy…the process is as important as the conclusion,” he said.

Meanwhile, MP for North Tongu, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa has advised the Committee to consider reviewing the CCTV camera fitted in Parliament of Friday January 27 to interrogate the content.

In a memo dated February 24 and forwarded to the Joe Ghartey Committee, the legislator said former Sports Minister, Nii Lantei Vanderpuiye is in the position to testify that the GHC3,000 was returned by the NDC MPs.

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