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Independent committee would’ve done better – Dr Draman on ‘Cash for Seat’ committee report

The Executive Director of the African Centre for Parliamentary Affairs (ACEPA) has bemoaned the posture of the Majority and Minority in Ghana’s Parliament where the former capitalizes on their numbers and powers to silence the latter.

Speaking on 3FM’s Sunrise following events on the back of the findings of the five-member ad hoc committee to probe the ‘Cash for Seat’ saga, Dr Rasheed Draman said an independent committee would have handled the issue better.

“In many jurisdictions, independent committees are set up, and they are made up of very senior statesmen who have nothing to lose in terms of making an objective judgment when it comes to issues like this,” Dr Draman said.

“I’m sure they will have handled this better.”

Dr. Draman reiterated the failure on the part of the Majority and Minority to present the truth regarding the ‘Cash for Seat’ saga.

“Right now, we don’t know what the real story is because the Majority has its own story and the Minority has its story.”

According to ACEPA’s Executive Director, Parliament has failed the citizenry in dealing with the issue to ensure that concerns are properly dealt with.

He described as worrying the manner in which the Majority and Minority deal with issues of corruption.

“I think this is becoming too much in our modern politics, and the way we go about it is very worrying because one will expect that when it comes to issues of national interest such as this one, our law makers will make sure that regardless of the difference between them, they will make sure that they come together.”

Dr. Rasheed Draman added that there is the need to have a united front to represent the interest of the Ghanaian people.

Parliament set up a five-member ad hoc committee to look into allegations made by Alhaji Muntaka Mohammed and Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, accusing the Trades Ministry of illegally levying expatriate business owners at an awards ceremony.

Prior to the allegations, Minority members had accused the Ministry of “extorting” monies from the business owners.

On Tuesday, the five-member ad hoc committee presented its findings to Parliament. But immediately after the presentation, the Minority walked out of Parliament on the basis that they were not given enough time to go through the report.

The report, which cleared the Trades Ministry of any wrongdoing, was, nonetheless, debated on and subsequently referred to the Privileges Committee.

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