The scheduled public hearing yesterday by the Government Assurances Committee of Parliament meant to make the Finance and Economic Planning Minister, Seth Terkper, clarify some issues in parliament has been postponed. This followed a plea by the Minister for the Committee to excuse him to attend a very ‘important’ meeting abroad.
The new date would be made known when Parliament reconvenes on Tuesday, June 3.
The Finance Minister was supposed to appear before the Committee to tell Members what step he was taking to realize the numerous promises made to Ghanaians on the economy and also what had become of President Mahama’s initiative to cut down the salaries of Ministers of State by 10 percent for development projects in the health sector.
A source close to the committee said the minister’s plea to be ‘excused’ was to diplomatically run away from his responsibility to defend his ‘promises’ to the nation.
“The minister was obviously afraid of the probing questions that will be fired at him and therefore decided to stay away in the time being to save him from any disgrace,” the source said.
DAILY GUIDE’s information was that Mr. Terkper had agreed in principle to meet the Government Assurances Committee yesterday but wrote to the Chairman of the Committee at the eleventh hour for a permission to be excused from the meeting to enable him travel for an important meeting abroad.
A member of the Committee and New Patriotic Party (NPP) Member of Parliament for Berekum East, Dr. Kwabena Twum-Nuamah, told DAILY GUIDE on Friday after the committee had met some civil society organisations in Parliament that the group had been revived with adequate financial support.
“This Committee is the only Committee in parliament which has been empowered by the Standing Orders of Parliament to look into any issue independently without first referring it to the Speaker of Parliament,” he said.
According to him, while the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) of Parliament looks at the financial damage caused by public officials, the Government Assurances Committee would try to prevent the financial rot from occurring.