The Appointment Committee of Parliament has approved and recommended to the house for approval the nomination of Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, Hawa Koomson and Dr Owusu Afriyie Akoto as sector Ministers by majority decision.
Earlier reports indicated that Minister-designate for Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, Minister Designate for Fisheries and Aqua Culture, Hawa Koomson and Minister-designate for Food and Agriculture, Dr Owusu Afriyie Akoto had been rejected by the minority members on the committee.
But in the report of the committee which is yet to be presented at the plenary, the three have been recommended for approval by majority decision.
Others, including Minister-designate for National Security, Albert Kan Dapaah, Minister-designate for Interior, Ambrose Derry and Minister-Designate for Defence, Dominic Nitiwul have also been recommended for approval by consensus.
Below are the reasons the Minority MPs on the committee gave for rejecting some of the nominees who have been approved by majority decision:
1) Hawa Koomson (MP)
a) The Minister-designate for Fisheries and Aquaculture Development could not provide convincing grounds for the shooting incident during the Voter Registration Exercise in Kasoa on 20th July 2020 even though we acknowledge her belated apology for her recklessly dangerous conduct.
b) Furthermore, claims of an ongoing investigation by the Police did not come across as credible considering that there has been no update from the police more than 8 months after the unfortunate incident. Our checks also point to the fact that she has not provided any statement to the police as of yet.
c) The nominee confirmed the identity of close associates who have unleashed a reign of terror on helpless political opponents in the pursuit of their narrow political ends.
d) The Minister-designate displayed an alarmingly abysmal lack of knowledge on the sector she was nominated for, making her unfit for the portfolio and therefore untenable to secure the approval of members of the NDC caucus.
2) Dr Owusu Afriyie Akoto
a) The Minister-designate for Food and Agriculture was untruthful under oath to the Committee on the circumstances leading to the abrogation of the Fruit and Export Terminal Contract of 2015 by GPHA on his express instructions as contained in a letter dated 11th January 2021.
b) He was untruthful under oath about his directive ordering GPHA to issue a license to Fruit Terminal Company Ltd and how his actions could lead to a US$50million judgement debt.
c) The nominee was grossly insincere with the Appointments Committee on his special relationship with the Director of AMG Company Limited, Mr Ernest Appiah and the latter’s control of fertilizer contracts awarded by the Ministry.
d) The Minister-designate was particularly discourteous, downright condescending and offensively arrogant in his appearance at the committee which is not the kind of attitude expected of public servants.
3) Kojo Oppong Nkrumah (MP)
a) The Minister-designate for Information was not the least candid with the committee on the multiple infractions of the law leading to the Bank of Ghana’s revocation of the license of Oval Microfinance – a company in which he was 83% majority shareholder.
b) He failed to admit ethical liability for the related party lending between Oval Microfinance and West Brownstone which also belongs to him. He also denied outstanding obligations to Oval Microfinance despite the BoG’s examination report establishing the contrary.
c) He peddled untruths under oath about the circumstances leading to investigative journalist Manasseh Azure relocating to South Africa with the assistance of the Media Foundation for West Africa when the journalist faced threats to his life.
d) The nominee was quite evasive on his association with MX24 TV which is owned and managed by his wife with other family members such as Kwabena Oppong Nkrumah serving as shareholder/Trustee for the parent company of MX24 TV known as Black Volta Publications Limited incorporated recently on the 4th of April, 2017 when the nominee was serving as Deputy Minister for Information.