Energy debate resumes on acrimonious note


Wed, 27 Jun 2007 Source: GNA

Accra, June 27, GNA - The debate on the motion on the manner government was handling the energy crisis took a known terrain of heckling and constant interruptions on Wednesday when the debate resumed in Parliament with Mr Albert Kan-Dapaah, Minister of The Interior's making concluding remarks.

The nature of the debate was not any different from the acrimonious state that resulted in the Speaker suspending debate the first and second times before asking the leadership of both sides to meet and come out with a more decorous debate. This was not to be.

Even before Mr Speaker gave Mr Kan-Dapaah, the floor to continue the debate on the Minority's position that government had failed to adequately address the current energy crisis, other members, especially on the Minority side, were up to catch the eye of Mr Speaker on several points of order.

Mr Kan-Dapaah was arguing from a letter written by Mr Joshua Kofi Ofedie, Chief Executive of the Volta River Authority (VRA) that even though the previous regime of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) rightly diversified energy supply in the country with the establishment of the Aboadze Thermal Plant, they did not actually use it optimally. This, according to him was the case despite the fact that hydro sources had failed the nation at the time and water levels had dropped significantly.

The contribution of Mr Kan-Dapaah, a former Energy Minister and the interruptions from the Minority on the accuracy of his submission, continued for several times for well over 45 minutes.

For several times Mr. Moses Asaga, NDC-Nabdam, Mr. Mahama Ayarega, NDC-Bawku Central, Mr. Enoch Teye Mensah-NDC Ningo-Prampram, Alhaji Amadu Sorogho, NDC-Abokobi-Madina and Mr. Edward Doe Adjaho, NDC- Ave Avenor rose on the points of order to debunk Mr. Kan-Dapaah's position that the NDC government overused the Akosombo Dam and were responsible for destroying the storage capacity of the reservoir.

When time was far spent on several interruptions and points of order, the Speaker asked for an adjournment to Thursday June 28, 2007. But Mr. Kan Dapaah, who was to have winded up his contribution having started from the last debate on the motion said: "Mr Speaker, my colleagues on the other side have not allowed me to make my point and I have not even started.

"I have only read the charge sheet (letter from the VRA Chief Executive) and yet to proceed with my argument."

But Mr Abraham Ossei-Aidooh, NPP-Tema West, Deputy Minority Leader acceded to the adjournment proposal and seconded from Mr Alban Bagbin, NDC-Nadowli West that the debate would continue on Thursday. The House also under a certificate of urgency adopted the report of the Joint Committee on Foreign Affairs and Defence and Interior on the African Union Non-Aggression and Common Defence Pact. They also ratified the resolution on Amendments to the Constitutive Act of the African Union.

Source: GNA
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