By Edzorna Francis Mensah
The Minister of Finance, Ken Ofori Atta has been programmed to answer sixteen (16) questions on government expenditure related to the Covid-19 fund and other economic issues.
The Speaker Alban Bagbin issued the directive following a plea from Majority Bench that the Finance Minister who was programmed to appear and answer Covid-related questions on Thursday 16th June, 2022 was not available, but he will present himself next week Wednesday.
According to the Speaker, he could only allow papers to be laid and referred to the Finance Committee, but it must not be considered until the Finance Minister appeared before the House to answer his questions.
“Until the Finance Minister comes to answer these questions, do not consider the Reports”, he directed.
Last Thursday, the three separate loan agreements were to be taken but the Minority blocked them, forcing the Speaker to suspend sitting for ten minutes and returned with ruling as captured above.
The question comprises four (4) urgent questions and (12) twelve normal questions, below are the questions:
(a) Mr. Godfred Seidu Jasaw (Wa East): To ask the Minister for Finance when the Ministry will issue financial clearance to the Ministry of Food and Agriculture to clear the large debt owed partners and suppliers to ensure availability of subsidised fertilizer in this farming season.
(b) Ms. Sheila Bartels (Ablekuma North): To ask the Minister for Finance the current status of funding for the construction of Phase Two of the Tema Motorway, which has been highlighted as a major issue for commuters.
(c) Mr. Sylvester Tetteh (Bortianor-Ngleshie Amanfro): To ask the Minister for Finance the interventions the Ministry is employing to clamp the sustained increments in fuel prices as witnessed in the recent pricing windows.
(d) Mr. Edward Abambire Bawa (Bongo): To ask the Minister for Finance what the Ministry is doing with respect to imposed taxes and levies on petroleum products and the depreciation of the Cedi.to slow down the increases in prices of petroleum product prices at pumps.
Mr. Vincent Oppong Asamoah (Dormaa West): To ask the Minister for Finance whether the Ministry would consider sourcing additional funding for infrastructural development at the University of Energy and Natural Resources (UENR) in Sunyani just like it was done in respect of the University of Health and Allied Sciences (UHAS) in Ho, the University of Environment and Sustainable Development at Somanya, and recently for the proposed university at Bunso.
Mr. George Kweku Ricketts-Hagan (Cape Coast South): To ask the Minister for Finance which companies were used as Local Transaction Advisors and Local Legal Advisors for the 2021 Eurobond and how much were they paid in fees as individual companies.
Mr. George Kweku Ricketts-Hagan (Cape Coast South): To ask the Minister for Finance how much Government has realised (net proceeds) from the Eurobond issued in 2021, and how much it has spent on fees and related roadshow expenses.
Mr. Murtala Muhammed Ibrahim (Tamale Central): To ask the Minister for Finance how much revenue the State generated from the sale of power to neighbouring countries.
Ms. Theresa Lardi Awuni (Okaikwei North): To ask the Minister for Finance how much was raised in total from Government Bonds since 2017, who the transaction advisors and book runners were since 2017, and how was paid to each of the transaction advisors and book runners since 2017.
Mr. Frank Annoh-Dompreh (Nsawam-Adoagyiri): To ask the Minister for Finance how the 2022 budget will ensure that all the major issues of increased taxes, increased fuel prices and unmaintained roads which were raised during the course of 2021 wil] be tackled efficiently.
Dr. Stephen Amoah (Nhyiaeso): To ask the Minister for Finance the plans the Government has established through the Ministry of Finance to reduce the debt stock which stood at 76.1% in the first half of this year.
Mr. Kwadjo Asante (Suhum): To ask the Minister for Finance if the Government, through the Ministry’s work plan, intends to return to the International Monetary Fund for financial assistance.
Mr. Collins Adomako-Mensah (Afigya Kwabre North): To ask the Minister for Finance what assurance the Ministry can give in response to the widely held concern that the Government has abandoned projects started by previous administrations.
Ms. Dakoa Newman (Okaikwei South): To ask the Minister for Finance the progress and impact of the Ghana CARES programme as well as the plans to raise a US$100 Billion fund through a Government-Private collaboration, all aimed at revitalizing the economy, post COVID-19.
Mr. Frank Annoh-Dompreh (Nsawam-Adoagyiri): To ask the Minister for Finance how much has been invested in fighting COVID-19 and what gains are attributable to the investments made so far in respect of economic recovery.
Mr. Paul Apreku Twum-Barimah (Dormaa East): To ask the Minister for Finance what measures the Ministry has in place to ensure that the creation of one (1) million jobs stated in the mid-year budget is achieved, in light of the current indication that the Government payroll is full.