AFTER SEVERAL months of investigations and much-publicized allegations against him, Ken-Wuud Nuworsu, the President's nominee for Deputy Minister for Manpower, Youth and Employment, was finally approved unanimously by Parliament yesterday.
His approval followed the presentation of the Fifteenth Report of the Appointments Committee by its Chairman, Hon. Freddie W. A. Blay.
It would be recalled that the Committee had considered Mr. Nuworsu's nomination and submitted its report to the House on 30th July, 2007. However, the House deferred its decision on the nominee “prior approval” to allow for further checks into his background.
The appointment of the deputy minister became problematic following allegations of financial impropriety and queries from the Auditor-General's Department as well as the Serious Fraud Office (SFO).
During his vetting, he informed the Committee, whose questions were centred around the said allegations, that he was surprised at the questions posed to him on those matters since according to him, they had been sufficiently dealt with by various investigative bodies before his nomination.
He explained that he had already responded to queries raised in an audit report and had also obliged by the regional SFO directives that members raised. He however denied the many allegations made against him.
Mr. Ken-Wuud Nuworsu, currently the Volta Regional Director of National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO), told the Committee that he would work assiduously with the minister to ensure that government plans to deal with youth employment was fully achieved, if he was given the nod.
It would also be recalled that the Committee suspended its report laid in the House on 29th November 2007 to perform further checks on the veracity or otherwise of allegations against the nominee.
Through correspondence with the Auditor-General, Mr. Edward Dua Agyeman, it was confirmed that there were irregularities in the procedure adopted in the maiden 2004 audit report that was carried out on the accounts of NADMO, Ho, which adversely affected the nominee. A re-audit had been subsequently conducted on the said accounts.
The Appointments Committee was provided with a copy of the re-audit by the Auditor-General's Department, who subsequently noted that the report exonerated the nominee from the alleged financial impropriety and other related matters that were raised at the public vetting of the nominee.
In another development, the Committee on Youth, Sports and Culture on the Chieftaincy Bill, has examined the contents of the Chieftaincy Bill in the light of its object and purpose, saying it was of the view that they are consistent with the Constitution and all other relevant statutes. The Committee accordingly recommended its passage by the House.
By Sylvanus Nana Kumi & Ethel Kangberee