13.07.2006 Social News

MPs Call For Critical Reforms At GBC

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MEMBERS of Parliament were yesterday challenged to provide proof of having ever purchased a TV licence.

“Have you paid your TV licence fees? “queried, Mr. Stephen Balado Manu, NPP-Ahafo Ano South. “I am calling on honourable members to produce their receipts,”

The member, who was contributing to a statement on the need for critical reforms of the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation (GBC), called for active involvement of all Ghanaians in the recapitalization of the state broadcaster through the purchase of TV licences.

Mr. Manu said: “My argument is that Ghanaians as a whole are failing the GBC. We go to pay huge amounts of money to buy DSTV and other channels and yet find it difficult to pay 3, 000 cedis to have a GBC TV licence.

“Let us pay our TV licence fees and GBC would have money for its operations.

The statement, which was made by Mr. Haruna Iddrisu, NDC-Tamale South proposed a presidential commission of enquiry into the affairs of the GBC.

Dr Paa Kwesi Nduom, Minister of Public Sector Reforms, however argued that a presidential commission was not necessary since Parliament had passed a Subvented Agencies Act, which, he said, took care of the restructuring of the GBC.

In another development, the Minority in Parliament has called for an independent investigation into alleged government financing of 150 “serial callers” of the New Patriotic Party to watch the World Cup.

It also called for investigations into the alleged preparation of document by some high government officials to procure visas for the serial callers, who were presented as “officials in a higher capacity than the reality.”

Mr. Abuga Pele, Minority Spokesman on Sports made the call at a press conference in Accra.

He said the allegations were serious and the Minority's call for enquiry was to establish the culpability or otherwise of the officials involved.

He said the outstanding performance of the Black Stars should not make the country “lose sight of the need to ensure probity and accountability, particularly in government in order to lay a firm foundation for development.”

He said for instance that Italy emerged the World Cup champions but that had not blinded the authorities to discipline leading clubs and some leading football personalities for corrupt behaviour.

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