Member of Parliament for Tamale South, Haruna Iddrisu has described the portfolio of the Minister-designate for Public Enterprises as lacking clarity and capable of breeding confusion.
In his view, the nominee’s portfolio presents itself as a duplication of the duties of SIGA (State Interest and Governance Authority) as well as the role and responsibilities of other government agencies.
Joseph Cudjoe when asked to explain the functions of his assigned ministry and the role he will play to ensure that Public Enterprises and Corporations run efficiently, effectively and productively, the Minister-designate stated that he would work with SIGA to ensure the progress of state-owned enterprises and other government entities.
In response to that, Mr Iddrisu indicated that he found his portfolio to be “nebulous–because if you take for instance the National Health Authority, it is an entity supervised by a Minister for Health, if you take SSNIT, what have you got to do with SSNIT and pensions it is still supervised by a Minister of Finance or the Minister responsible for employment.
“It means that your Ministry is likely to be a source of policy and governance confusion because your mandate comes across many state enterprises that already have dedicated Ministries and Ministers,” Mr Iddrisu stated with concern.
Following the concerns raised by Mr Iddrisu at the start of the Minister-designate’s vetting, the session was suspended by the Chairman of the Committee, Joseph Osei-Owusu to allow members of the appointment committee to seek clarification from the Executive.
The session was subsequently resumed and the minister-designate taken through the vetting process.
In conclusion, Haruna Iddrisu noted that his purpose for objecting to his portfolio was because the law concerning the forming of ministries needed to be complied fully with.
He also cautioned Mr Cudjoe on ensuring that he carefully delineates his ministry’s role clearly so as to avoid a “turf war” with other state departments whose role might coincide with his.
“Mine will be to caution you that you have to hasten slowly other than that you will work into a turf war and turf battle with almost all the other Ministry or Department of State.”