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12.02.2010 Politics

Minister designates face vetting committee

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Minister designates face vetting committee
February 11, 2010
Accra, Feb. 10, GNA -Four of the new Minister-designates, on Wednesday appeared before the Parliamentary Vetting Committee to answer questionsrelating to the new ministries they have been nominated to serve.

They four, Mr Enoch T. Mensah,for Employment and Social Welfare, Mr Martin Amidu, for the Interior, Mr Alban Sumane K. Bagbin, Water Resources Works and Housing, swore the oaths before the 25 member committee, chaired by Mr Edward Doe Adjaho.

Mr Mensah, who was the first to come before the committee, advocated the strengthening of public institutions, by equipping them with qualified personnel and ensuring that they were well resourced and with the needed tools to work with.

He said most of the youth are not employed because they were not employable, and that "We need to give them skills trainingwith emphasis on vocational and technical training.

Mr Mensah said the lack of well resourced institutions is limiting the quality of staff and preventing people living outside the country to come here to work, adding that, the salary level of workers was very poor, leading to low productivity and this needs to be looked at.

On the National Youth Employment Programme, Mr Mensah said, if given the nod, he would petition the President to have the programme returned toits host Ministryforeffective monitoring and evaluation.

When askedwhether the President had nominated him for the Ministry of Employment in order to give jobs to members of the NationalDemocratic Party, he said the perception was false because there were no jobs at the Ministry to doll out.

On the labour front, Mr Mensah said "it would be peaceful if we improve on workers conditions of service.

The 58 years old Mr Matin Amidu,had a tough time with the committee, who queried him onhis tax payment.

Mr Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, Minority Leadersaid records from the Internal Revenue Service showed that in 2008, Mr Amidu was provisionally not liable to tax whilst in 2009 he had no taxobligation but in 2010, taxes were being deducted at source.

Mr Amidu said he had practiced law before but has been dormant for some years now and so served the IRS with a notice of de-registration so he was therefore not entitled to tax.

On conflict resolution,Mr Amidu saidhis philosophy was thatcrime was crime no matter the degree or where it happenedand crimesshould not be associated with politics.

Mr Amidu said selection of crimes for resolution has the tendency to undermine the law, adding that, conflicts were highlighted because of the perceptions surrounding them"but as a government we have to deal withall conflicts".

He said the Dagbon problem was a complex one and different approaches must be adopted to resolve it.

Mr Ambrose Dery, Deputy MinorityLeader, asked what he would dowith conflictflash points such as Yendi, Agbogbloshie, Bawku and Dagbon.

He said "there was the need to institutionalise conflictresolution because each person in a conflict was responsible for it and we needto adopt a multi-disciplinary approachto address them".

He said the Police Service must be supported to be able to fight crime and asked Ghanaians to help to expose corrupt practices in society.


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