Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu denies claims of undermining Speaker

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Majority Leader, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu has denied claims attributed to him that he went public to contradict the Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin regarding the release of funds to Parliament to run its business.

According to him, he did not go out to undermine the Speaker but only spoke to the issues he knew concerning the release of some monies to the House.

“Apparently, some communication had been made to the Speaker that I had gone out to contradict him in public, so the Speaker came to the House and made some statements… which I consider unfortune.”

Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu refuted the claim when he commented on the issue on Tuesday in Parliament in a bid to clarify the matter, which he said was borne out of miscommunication.

The Majority Leader also explained that on Wednesday May 25, 20222, the Director of Finance and the Clerk of Parliament came to him to discuss the status of Parliament’s finances and in their presence, called the Controller and Accountant General (CAG) because, it appeared the situation was dire.

He said the Attorney General assured him that twenty-five million cedis (GH₵25,000,000) was going to be released to the House by the close of the day and later called the Director of Finance who confirmed that the money had been released to Parliament.

He said it appeared the Speaker was not aware the GH₵25 million had been released to the House and was surprised to hear on Thursday that the Speaker had made a statement to the extent that Parliament did not have the money to run its usual business.

He said the Friday morning radio interview in Kumasi only sought to clarify that some amount of money has been released to Parliament and not to undermine the Speaker.

“I did not go out there to contradict the Speaker but only spoke out to what he knew. My prayer is that collectively, the leadership and the Speaker shall have to invite the Minister of Finance and the Controller and Accountant General, that going forward, these occasional hitches do not occur” he added.

After the comment by the Majority Leader, Speaker Bagbin also replied by stating that members were aware of the challenges Parliament is facing in connection with the delays in budgetary releases to the House to run its business.

He explained that for the first quarter of 2022, Parliament was expected to receive GH₵54 million to run its programmes but only Seven million cedis was released, and the GH₵25 million which has been release is part of arrears of GH₵84 million for 2021.

“We are giving you this information so that leadership and the Speaker are not blamed for not responding positively to the request of members and committees to transact their business… “because the there is not there, that is why we find ourselves in this situation,” he said.

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