General News of Tuesday, 18 July 2017
Parliament was on Tuesday presented with two bills for processes to begin into enacting them as law. The Bills were the Office of the Special Prosecutor Bill, 2017 and the Zongo Development Fund Bill, 2017.
The absence of the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice caused some members especially on the minority side to raise concerns about the seriousness attached to the first reading of the Bill on the floor of the House.
This was however dealt with by the Majority leader, Osei Kyei Mensah Bonsu, who explained that the absence of the Attorney-General was as a result of some urgent issues that came up she had to deal with.
He added that it was for that reason he designated an MP, and deputy Attorney-General, Joseph Dinkiok Kpemka, to lay the paper before the House but assured the House of her availability in any subsequent sittings.
The Minister of Inner-City and Zongo Development, Boniface Saddique Abubakar was, however, present at the first presentation of the Zongo Development Fund Bill which is a flagship policy of his ministry.
Addressing the Media, Boniface Saddique Abubakar, revealed that he has embarked on a consultative tour to nine out of the ten regions and was yet to meet stakeholders in the Greater Accra Region.
He emphasised that unlike other initiatives introduced to address the needs of the Zongo communities, the Zongo Development Fund will need specific and will be designed in such a way that the impact is felt by the Zongo people.
“I have already gone to 9 out of the 10 regions… After this, I will send a group of consultants and technical people to go do needs assessments. What I have done is stakeholders consultations and the other group that will be moving will do a baseline assessment so therefore we will know the exact needs of each community.”
“Some will be water, drains, streets, roads, hospitals, clinics. We will be sending developments based on your needs. We wouldn’t provide toilet when the people need water. We will provide what they need so that the people will be the guard of what has been provided. At the end of the day, every body will see the value of what you are providing for them” he asserted
The two Bills were flagship initiatives proposed by the President in the run up to the 2016 polls in which he handed then incumbent President a humiliating defeat.
The president hopes to boost the fight against corruption with the introduction f the Special Prosecutor and intends to transform and improve the of lives people living in Zongo communities with the introduction of the Fund.
The two Bills have been redirected to the appropriate committees for detailed work to be done on it and further deliberations.