‘Cash for Seat’ Committee to present report to Parliament today

The Chairman of the committee, Mr Kwasi Ameyaw-Cheremeh (2nd left)
The Chairman of the committee, Mr Kwasi Ameyaw-Cheremeh (2nd left)

The Five-Member Parliamentary Committee probing the ‘Cash-for-Seat’ allegations is expected to present its final report to Parliament on today.

Additionally, the House would start the debate on the Committee’s report on Tuesday, February 6, 2018.

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Mr Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, the Majority Leader announced this on the floor of Parliament, saying that, the Committee had completed its work and was ready to submit the report to the House.

He said the reason why the Committee could not lay the report on Thursday, February 1, as stated earlier, was due to the fact that, Dr Dominic Ayine, a member of the Committee had raised a couple of issues and so they agreed to meet and discuss those matters.

Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu said the debate on the report had been scheduled for next week Tuesday, in order to give Members of Parliament (MP) enough time to read the about 50-page report.

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He said since the probe started, all the Committee members had been working together until on Thursday when Dr Ayine decided not to join them.

He however assured that the Committee was determined to complete the report and submit it to the House as arranged.

It would be recalled that the Ministry of Trade and Industry, which partnered the event organizers, Millennium Excellence Foundation, is alleged to have charged between $25,000 and $100,000, to enable expatriates to sit close to the President at the awards ceremony.

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The allegation was first made by Alhaji Muntaka Mubarak in Parliament in December 2017 and was further reinforced by Mr Okudzeto Ablakwa.

Mr Mubarak said the fees charged at the Ghana Expatriate Business Awards were not approved by Parliament, adding that, the monies were also not accounted for in the Internally Generated Funds [IGF] of the Ministry’s accounts.

The Ministry of Trade said it played no role in determining prices for seats at the event, and clarified that it only facilitated the implementation of a new initiative by the Millennium Excellence Foundation.

The organizers of the Awards had also explained that no one paid to sit close to the President, and that the amount was raised from sponsorship through a fundraising at the event.

Parliament subsequently formed a five-member committee to investigate the matter.