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29.09.2003 General News

Procurement Committee for EC will ensure transparency

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Kwaben (E/R), Sept. 29, GNA- The setting up an independent Procurement Committee to oversee the purchasing of electoral items for the Electoral Commission (EC) is to ensure "absolute transparency" and not to interfere in the EC's operations.

Nana Ohene Ntow, Government Spokesman on Finance, who said this at a monthly NPP Regional Rally at Kwaben in the Atiwa constituency on Sunday, said the decision was based on the outcome of a forensic audit report on the Commission's previous performance.

He asked the EC not to cry foul since the only reason for the Procurement Committee was to check against any waste.

Nana Ohene Ntow called on members of the party to work hard and be truthful to the electorate in order to win the 2004 elections. The Eastern Regional Minister, Dr Francis Osafo-Mensah called on the people to embrace the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), citing the Kwahuman Mutual Health scheme under which, he said, about 20,000 people in the Kwahu South District had benefited over the last two years.

He said 2.5 percent deduction of workers' SSNIT contribution to support the NHIS would not affect pension benefits and urged workers to change their stand for the sake of the unemployed who are to benefit from the NHIS.

Dr Osafo-Mensah maintained that the institution of the NHIS was an electoral promise the NPP made to the electorate and criticised the opponents for attempting to sabotage the implementation process. He said a recent tour of the districts had indicated that the NPP administration was undertaking more projects to develop the rural areas within the two-and-half years of its rule than it inherited. The District Chief Executive of East Akim, Mr Victor Asihene, said the President J A Kufuor has given approval for the Atiwa constituency to be upgraded into a district in response to the people's demands and urged the communities to work hard to raise enough revenue to support the new district.

He said development projects including roads rehabilitation and boreholes for 23 communities under various funding were in progress in the district.

Mr Asihene introduced 20 former members of the NDC from various zones in the Abuakwa constituency led by Mr Kwame Danso Amankwa, alias "Fu Manchu", Kibi Zonal Organiser, who have defected to the NPP to the gathering.

In a brief remark, Mr Amankwa said his group was satisfied with President Kufuor's government's efforts to bring peace and development, hence their decision to defect to the NPP.

"I am coming into the NPP with many others from all over the district because we have now seen the difference between water and sand for us to choose what we want", he added.

The MP for the constituency and Deputy Minister of Works and Housing, Dr Charles Bimpong-Yeboah, said with his share of the MPs Common Fund, some school blocks and water projects had been provided in some communities.

The Eastern Regional Chairman of the NPP, Nana Adi Ankamah, asked the members of the party to open up their ranks to admit new members into the party, saying, "We need more numbers to win 2004 elections." 29 Sept. 03

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