Minority's vote of censure for #KenMustGo yet to be accepted by Speaker
Ibrahim Ahmed (4th from left), First Deputy Minority Whip, addressing journalists in Parliament

Minority's vote of censure for #KenMustGo yet to be accepted by Speaker

The Minority in Parliament has filed a motion of censure to remove the Minister of Finance, Ken Ofori-Atta, over the current state of the economy.

The motion was filed by the Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu, at the office of the Speaker, Alban Bagbin, Tuesday (October 25, 2022) but it is yet to be admitted by the Speaker.

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The Minority has, therefore, urged their counterparts in the Majority Caucus to throw their weight behind the motion when it is laid to garner the 183 Members of Parliament (MPs) needed to push for the Finance Minister’s removal.

Motion

The motion seeks to invoke article 82 of the Constitution which provides for the elaborate procedure of removing a Minister of State through proceedings in Parliament.

If the motion is admitted, the Minister of Finance will be the second minister in recent times to have such a motion filed against him, following that of the Minister of Health, Kwaku Agyeman-Manu, which is still pending in the House.

Context

Addressing journalists at the Parliament House Tuesday, the First Deputy Minority Whip, Ibrahim Ahmed, said when the Business Committee met last Monday, the Minority Leader indicated to the Majority Leader and the Chairman of the Business Committee, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, that he was going to proceed with a motion to remove the Finance Minister from office.

He said the move was based on the poor economic management, inconsistencies, non-performance and the failure to perform statutory obligations.

He, therefore, expressed shock at the move by the Majority Caucus to hold a press conference to call on the President to dismiss Mr Ofori-Atta.

“The Minority Leader told the chairman of the Business Committee, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, that as the representatives of the people, we must move a motion to call for the head of the finance minister.

“So, if our brothers in the Majority believe in this, what they should do is to support the motion by the Minority Leader for the removal of the Finance Minister,” he said.

Why President’s not sacking minister?

Mr Ahmed, who is also the MP for Banda, described the press briefing by the Majority as long overdue since they failed in the past to act.

“So, it should not be the Majority or the Minority coming to make a press conference.

“If we have 137 Minority and 137 Majority plus one and both sides believe that the Finance Minister is killing the economy and, therefore, he must go, it should not be difficult to mobilise 183 MPs to dismiss or to reshuffle him if the President is failing to do that,” he added.

Reaction

Earlier Tuesday, some Majority Members of Parliament (MPs) in a press conference asked President Akufo-Addo to remove the Finance Minister, Mr Ofori-Atta, and the Minister of State at the ministry, Charles Adu Boahen, from office now to help restore confidence in the economy.

The group said it would not do business with government if the president failed to heed their call.

Spokesperson, Andy Appiah-Kubi, NPP MP for Asante Akim North, said that members of the majority would not participate in any government business, including the budget hearing until their demands were met.

Reacting to the said motion, the Deputy Majority Leader, Alexander Kwamina Afenyo-Markin, said currently there was no motion before the house because it had not been admitted by the Speaker.

"This amounts to throwing dust into the eyes of Ghanaians," he said.

Mr Afenyo-Markin, who is also the MP for the Effutu Constituency in the Central Region, said the entire world's economy was in crisis and that it would be wrong to attack the minister.

"Even almighty UK is struggling and people are paying more for basic things and mortgage," he said.

The MP said the government had taken steps to address the situation by going to the International Monetary Fund for a solution, saying, "The situation is not easy but I urge all of you to have faith."

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