General News of Monday, 20 February 2017
Bawku Central Member of Parliament, Mahama Ayariga has said he has no direct evidence which will prove that members of Parliament’s Appointment Committee received a bribe from the then Minister of Energy, Mr Boakye Agyarko, to facilitate his approval.
According to him, his allegation was after he found out that the money was not allowances meant for the previous Appointment Committee sitting.
He said this on Monday in Accra when he appeared before the five-member ad hoc committee of Parliament investigating the bribery allegation which has rocked Ghana’s legislature.
Mr Ayariga in his opening statement without counsel said on the 27th January he received a call from Accra-based radio station, Radio Gold to comment on a bribery allegation in Parliament.
He recounted his version of events, stating that he received money from the Minority Chief Whip, Alhaji Mubarak Mohammed Muntaka which he thought was their sitting allowance but when he was told it was a money coming from a ministerial nominee he together with other minority members on the appointment committee returned the money.
Hon Ayariga explained that the money was returned only after he found out it was not a sitting allowance for previous Appointment Committee hearings.
The Bawku Central MP also reaffirmed that he had no direct-dealings with either Mr Agyarko or the chairman of the Appointment Committee Joseph Osei-Owusu in receiving the money.
In response to a query as to whether he could confirm the allegations of bribery made against Mr Agyarko, Mr Ayariga explained that this is why he asked the Minority Chief Whip, Alhaji Muntaka to investigate the matter in his initial complaint.