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12.03.2009 Politics

Parliament Approves 4 Deputy Ministers Designate

By ISD (Gilbert Ankrah & Richie Osei)

Parliament in accordance with Article 78(1) and Article 256 (1) of the 1992 constitution yesterday approved the nomination 4 deputy ministerial nominees by President Mills.

The four whose approval was by consensus are Dr Seth Terkper, Deputy Minister for Finance and Economic Planning, Rashid Pelpuo, Hon Alhaji Amadu Seidu and Hon Tawiah Likpalimor, all ministers of state.

Meanwhile, the approval of Fiifi Kwetey one of two Deputy Ministers of Finance is still on hold pending further investigations about his role as the propaganda secretary of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) in which he was believed to be peddling untruths during the just ended December polls.

Debate on the 2009 budget statement later continued on the floor of Parliament and was characterised by accusations and counter accusations.

Contributing to the debate, Former Minister for Finance and Economic planning and MP for Wenchi, Prof Gyan- Baffour, agued that there is no significant change in the budget and described reduction in some essential commodities as insignificant.

He further argued that the reduction of petrol prices will not have any impact on rural dwellers adding that the $50 million which is to be lost due to the reduction of some taxes on petroleum products can provide about 500 boreholes for about 500 communities in the country.

He also touched on the MPs constituency fund and said the role of MP does not include initiating developmental projects but rather they are legislators.

MP for Subin, Isaac Osei, was also of the view that the budget should have focused on job creating adding that 'we need to develop capacities especially in the areas of trade intellectual property rights, and trade in services'

In his contribution, MP for Anlo, Hon Clement Kofi Humado pointed out that this year's budget is different and logical and will go a long way to impact positively on the lives of Ghanaians.