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16.03.2009 General News

Parliamentary Delegates Call On Information Minster

By ISD (Elvis Adjei-Baah)

Information Minister, Mrs. Zita Okaikoi An eight- member Parliamentary Select Committee on Communication and Information, today, paid a courtesy call at the Ministry of Information with the aim of acquainting themselves with the Ministry and to know what the Ministry intends to do as part of its mandate for this year.

The delegation, which was led by the Chairman of the Committee and the Member of Parliament for Mpohor-Sena, Hon. Felix Twumasi Appiah explained that the visit is also to know at first hand the needs of the Ministry especially relating to the their budget allocation.

Receiving them, the Hon. Information Minister, Mrs Sabah Zita Okaikoi noted that the Ministry has made provisions for some projects to be undertaken but hinted that the economic crisis seems to hamper the take off of such projects. As a result, Government, she pointed out, is unable to meet the required budget that should be allocated to the Ministry.

The Hon. Minister disclosed that her Ministry has a mandate of sensitising the nation on the need for national unity as well as to protect and keep the environments clean, adding that 'it would take a very huge budget'.

In this regard, Mrs. Okaikoi called for support to help her Ministry undertake the task it has set out to embark upon.

Touching on the conflict-prone Bawku in the Upper East Region and even in Agbobloshie in Accra, the Minister stated that, she plans to engage in important political talk with opinion leaders to find a lasting solution to the conflict. Mrs. Okaikoi, therefore, suggested documentaries and drama that show the effects of conflicts as a way of highlighting the real effects of the menace.

In this regard, the Minister indicated that a proposal will soon be rolled-out in a bid to bring to the attention of people living in conflict prone areas across the nation, the need to stop the violence since 'there are many developmental projects that the Government has in place for them'.

The MP for Ablekuma South, Hon. Fritz Baffour, advocated the need for the sensitisation programme on keeping the environment clean to be done in tandem with stakeholders such as the National Commission on Culture, the Ministry of the Interior and other auxiliary bodies to collectively coordinate these activities effectively and efficiently.

On how to carry out these mandate, the Minister for Information said, she will rely heavily on the over 136 Information Service Department vans that are at the Ministry's disposal, adding that those broken down will be repaired and dispatched to the districts.

The MP for Tamale Central, Hon. Inusah Fuseini was particularly delighted with the Ministry's vision of instituting a programme that deals with the social predicaments of some areas in the Northern Region and other areas in Ghana, stressing that 'it was one of the aspects to let the people know that they are one people with one destiny'.

Other members of the Committee include the MP for Evalue-Gwira, Hon. Catherine Afeku, Hon. Herold Coddina of Setwi Akontowbra, Hon. Aquinas Quansah of Mfantseman West and Hon. Ahmed Ibrahim of Tain constituency.

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