Despite Majority’s in Ghana’s parliament protests, the budget for 2022 appears to have been rejected, making it the first time in the Fourth Republic’s history that a budget has not been approved but it is not the first time in Ghana’s history.
A budget statement was similarly rejected by Parliament in the third republic under Dr. Hilla Limann.
Interestingly, the motion to have that budget of 1979 rejected was initiated by Jones Amoako Atta Ofori-Atta, who was then the Ranking Member on the Finance Committee.
Jones Amoako Atta Ofori-Atta, the father of current finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta, filed a motion to have the budget, presented by then Finance Minister Dr Amon Nikoi, rejected.
The motion was then seconded by Dr G. K. Adama, the Parliamentary Spokesperson on Finance for the ruling People’s National Party (PNP). This subsequently, led to the resignation of Dr. Nikoi as a Finance Minister.
About the 2022 budget rejection.
It will be recalled that on Friday November 26, 2021, Parliament of Ghana rejected the 2022 fiscal year ‘Agyenkwa’ budget.
Describing the Budget as “the killer budget” all the 137 NDC MPs voted in a one-sided House. This was after members on the Majority side staged a walkout during proceedings as a result of disagreement over a directive by the Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin, for non-MPs to vacate the Chamber.
Parliament had through a voice vote rejected a request by the Minister of Finance, Ken Ofori-Atta, to meet the leadership of the House before the approval of the 2022 budget.
Deputy Majority Leader, Alexander Afenyo Markin, challenged the Speaker’s interpretation of the voice vote and called for a ‘division’.
Mr. Bagbin thus directed that, per orders of the House, non-MPs had to vacate the Chamber during the voice division process.
While vacating the Chamber, the Majority MPs demanded that the General Secretary of the opposition National Democratic Congress, Johnson Asiedu Nketiah, who was sitting in the public gallery at the time, must also exit the House but that request was ignored.
This infuriated the Majority MPs who walked out of the Chamber, leaving only members on the Minority side.
The Speaker of Parliament thus suspended the sitting for five minutes which later resume after 20 minutes but the Majority side of the House failed to return.
Alban Bagbin, Speaker of Parliament went ahead with proceedings indicating that this is not the first time proceedings of the House continued after one side of the House stage a walkout.
This time around, the Speaker adopted a headcount in the absence of the Majority side of the House, stating that the Majority side of the House walked out of their own business.
Source: Richard Mensah Adonu | Join our Telegram Group