Haruna Iddrisu Reveals Why they approved “incompetent Akufo-Addo ministers”
When the Minority Caucus in Parliament voted in favor of several contentious government choices in 2021, they came under fire.
The approval of individuals like Hawa Koomson, Kojo Oppong-Nkrumah, and Ken Ofori-Atta for the respective ministries of Fisheries and Aquaculture, Information, and Finance resulted in criticism of their leadership, particularly Haruna Iddrisu.
Calls for Koomson’s dismissal as a result of her failure to demonstrate competence in the position for which she was being nominated came after the trio appeared before the Appointments Committee. Both Oppong-Nkrumah and Ofori-Atta were involved in disputes over their own enterprises.
Speaking about how and why the aforementioned ministers were allegedly approved with the assistance of some Minority MPs, Minority Leader and Tamale South lawmaker, Haruna Iddrisu, said on Pan African TV’s Talk Time program that it was difficult to prevent someone, particularly an MP, from becoming a minister.
When questioned about the Minority’s role in Ghana’s appointment of ineffective ministers, he replied, “That’s accurate. As the leader of the minority opposition, I’m not persuaded that it is my obligation to nominate capable ministers for the president. That is not my main responsibility.
He clarified that the president had a constitutional obligation to create and organize his government in order to conduct his administration.
“We authorized them, and our authorization was based on the law. In particular, I have received a lot of criticism over my approval or disapproval of ministers, he said.
In contrast to the Constitution’s requirement that 51% of ministers originate from Parliament, he claimed that Article 94 only states that a candidate must pass muster as an MP. He asserted, “You can’t exclude an MP from being a Minister,” based on the aforementioned.
“At the Appointments Committee, we put up our best effort and run our litmus test for competence, ministerial portfolio, and policy. We evaluate his skills to see if he is qualified to work in that field.
The Minority were thus calling for changes to Standing Orders so that a Foreign Affairs Minister after reshuffle shouldn’t go straight to Agric Ministry because their competence in that Ministry has not been tested. “We will look at the competence of the person, whether he is fit for purpose to go into that particular area,” revealed the Minority.
He further clarified that the Minority could not force all of the members to unanimously reject a nominee because of the secret ballot mechanism used to choose Ministers.
“If you put that to a vote and saw the humiliating results of Hawa Koomson, Kojo Oppong-Nkrumah, and Kwesi, any elected MP is an adult, and I, Haruna Iddrisu, cannot accompany an NDC MP to the voting booth to instruct him on how to cast his ballot. He is sufficiently accountable.
“My role is limited to issuing the party whip, which is the instruction that you are expected to oppose this policy. I cannot be held accountable since I am an adult who respects the confidentiality of the vote, he emphasized.