The Plenary of Parliament in the early hours of Thursday approved 13 ministers designate recommended by the Appointments Committee, after their vetting, following their nomination for the portfolios by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo.
Three of the nominees, widely speculated to have been rejected by members of the Minority side of the Appointments Committee, were recommended by a majority decision, and sailed through when the plenary voted on the motion for their recommendation.
Two hundred and sixty five (265) Members of Parliament (MPs), present at the plenary, voted in a secret ballot late Wednesday night that ran into the early hours of Thursday morning.
In the vote, Mrs Mavis Hawa Koomson, Mr Kojo Oppong Nkrumah and Dr Owusu Afriyie Akoto, ministers designate for Fisheries and Aquaculture Development, Information, and Food and Agriculture, respectively, were approved.
Mrs Koomson topped with 151 voting “Yes” and 104 “No,” representing 60.75 per cent, followed by Mr Nkrumah with 155 for “Yes” and 110 for “No,” representing 58.65 per cent, with Dr Akoto getting 143 Yes votes and 121 No votes representing 53.96 per cent, of the ballot result. There was one spoiled ballot.
There was a resounding and long aye when Speaker Alban Sumana Kingsford Bagbin put the vote for the 10 other Ministers Designate, which the Appointments Committee had by consensus recommended for approval.
The plenary became silent when the Speaker put the question for a No vote.
Those recommended for approval by consensus are Ms Sarah Adwoa Safo, Minister Designate for Gender, Children and Social Protection; Mr Ignatius Baffour Awuah, Minister Designate for Employment and Labour Relations; Mr Ambrose Dery, Minister Designate for the Interior; Mr Dan Botwe, Minister Designate for Local Government, Decentralisation and Rural Development; Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh, Minister Designate for Energy; and Mr Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, Minister Designate for Parliamentary Affairs.
The rest are Dr Yaw Osei-Adutwum, Minister Designate for Education; Ms Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, Minister Designate for Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration; Mr Dominic Nitiwul, Minister Designate for Defence; and Mr Albert Kan Dapaah, Minister Designate for National Security.
When a decision is taken by consensus, all the members of a group agree on a proposal, but it does not mean that they all agree on every element of the proposal.
Approval by majority means more than half the number of the people agree on a proposal.
The 26-member Appointments Committee of Parliament is currently chaired by Mr Joseph Osei–Owusu, the First Deputy Speaker and MP for Bekwai, with Mr Haruna Iddrisu, the Minority Leader and MP for Tamale South.
After the approval, the Speaker said the House would proceed to communicate the decision to the President.
The approved ministers designate would have to be sworn-in by the President to assume their respective ministerial portfolios.
The Speaker adjourned the House till 1400 hours for the Appointments Committee and 1600 hours for the plenary.