Ranking Member on the Finance Committee in Parliament, Cassiel Ato Forson has announced his intention to file for the second time, a motion to constitute a bipartisan committee to probe government’s Covid-19 expenditure.
His previous motion had been admitted by Speaker Alban Bagbin but was later dismissed by First Deputy Speaker, Joseph Osei-Owusu who argued that the motion ought not to have been admitted in the first place.
But Speaker Alban Babgin has described Joseph Osei-Owusu’s ruling as unconstitutional, illegal and offensive.
He said the action by the First Deputy Speaker is a penchant to overturn his ruling.
Speaking on Top Story, Wednesday, Cassiel Ato Forson said he will re-file the motion before the House on Thursday, February 24.
“I hope to have a meeting with the leadership of the Minority Caucus tomorrow [Thursday] morning and if all is well, tomorrow I will be able to file the motion again. I think I have various options, probably I may also decide to challenge the Speaker’s ruling,” he said.
He argued that the bi-partisan probe is necessary due to what he describes as an ‘outrageous’ expenditure by the government on Covid-19.
“In fact, if you sit in committee meetings in Parliament, most Sector Ministers that this money went to them anytime you are interrogating the matter, they tell you that the amount that they claim was given to them, the entire amount was not given to them so clearly Parliament does not have a handle on the very expenditure that was sent to us in economic difficulties,” he stated.
He said his decision is to ensure accountability and oversight of the public purse.
“What I’m saying is that the amount of GH₵10 billion is too much…I believe that time has come for us to sit down and interrogate the matter for us to understand how this money was spent and make some proposals and possible legislation so that we can regulate this going forward,” he added.
The Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu has also noted his side’s intention to call Joseph Osei-Owusu’s decision to order.
“Mr. Speaker I’m saying so because as you yourself rightly advised, we will challenge the ruling of your First Deputy to which you have so eloquently addressed this morning,” he said on the floor of the House on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, Speaker Bagbin has fumed over recent conduct by some Members of Parliament.
He told MPs on Wednesday afternoon that Parliament is not a place for joking but serious national business.
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