Parliament Probes $700m GNPC Loan

Speaker Edward Doe Adjaho
Parliament will be looking into the $700 million loan contracted by the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC), which was without the consent of the legislature.

The New Patriotic Party (NPP) Member of Parliament (MP) for Manhyia South, Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh, on Friday asked the august House to probe why GNPC could go outside Parliament to contract a public loan.

During consideration of the business for the week ending November 14 on Friday, Dr Opoku Prempeh, through the Speaker, asked the business committee to as a matter of urgency summon officials of GNPC to appear before the august House and explain to the MPs why they should not be sanctioned for going for a loan without Parliamentary scrutiny and approval.

“Mr Speaker, this is a very serious issue and Parliament has to assert its authority to ensure that such aberrations do not happen,” he stressed.

He said if the GNPC were found culpable they should be given the stiffest punishment to serve as a deterrent to other public organisations or institutions.

The MP for Atwima Kwanwoma, Dr Kojo Appiah-Kubi, also asked Parliament to consider a law that would ensure that all activities of GNPC were subjected to Parliamentary scrutiny and approval because according to him, the corporation is one institution where a lot of funds are dissipated to the disadvantage of Ghanaians.

“Parliament needs to have oversight role over all activities of the GNPC,” he said.

The Speaker, Edward Doe Adjaho, said now that the issue had come to the attention of Parliament, with the matter bordering on constitutionality, the business committee would have to give it an urgent consideration and accordingly invite officials of the GNPC for questioning.

The MP for Nsawam/Adoagyiri, Frank Annoh-Dompreh, also called on Parliament to invite the Minister of the Interior to brief the people’s representatives on the security situation in the Nkwanta South District of the Volta Region, following the recent callous murder of the District Chief Executive for the area, Mr Peter Kojo Kenyenso.

According to him, Parliament ought to know what the ministry is doing to ensure that the murder of the DCE does not create instability in the area.

In the course of this week, the Health and the Foreign Affairs Ministers will appear before Parliament to brief the MPs on measures being instituted by government to protect the citizenry against the Ebola pandemic.

The Intestate Succession Bill (2013), Conduct of Public Officers Bill (2013), Petroleum Exploration and Production Bill (2014) and Plant Breeders Bill (2013), will also be considered by the House within the week.

By Thomas Fosu Jnr

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