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02.02.2005 Press Review

EDITORIAL: Bravo Appointments Committee

By Ghanaian Chronicle
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Parliament, yesterday debated the Report of the Appointments Committee on the vetting of the President's nominated ministers. The statements made by the Majority Leader, Mr. Felix Owusu Agyepong and The Minority Leader, Mr. Alban S. K. Bagbin, in their submissions when winding up the debate on the report were very reassuring.

The two leaders congratulated the Committee members as well as all who contributed to the work of the Committee. Of course the media was not left out! Its contribution to the Committee's work was acknowledged.

Hon Bagbin also acknowledged the criticisms leveled against the Committee by the public. Professionals among the populace who sought to impress the public by suggesting areas where questions should have been directed were also acknowledged!

The Minority leader acknowledged the limitations they were confronted with in terms of even legislations, and expressed the hope that the limitations would be cleared by introducing appropriate legislations that would enhance the future work of Parliament in this respect.

The fact that the Appointments Committee found it fit to freeze the Appointment of three of the nominees against who there remained unanswered questions, vindicates the work done by the media and other noble citizens, who would want to help ensure that at least some level of dignity surrounds the President's appointees.

The President cannot be everywhere. He surely must depend on other persons to stand in his stead to realize his visions. Parliament, owed it as a responsibility to the larger populace who elected them as their representatives, to protect the interest of the nation. We believe they have played their part.

It is our hope that other colleagues would emulate the good example set by some members of the Committee. This is very necessary for maintaining in high esteem the good image of Parliament, and Ghana.

It was clear from a lot of the questions asked, especially of those whose approval have been frozen, that the role of the media cannot ignored, if Parliament wants to take far-reaching decisions on behalf of the people.

It also brings to light the need to avoid sending certain critical Bills to the august House, under certificates of urgency. The fact that the people have elected their representatives does not deny them the right to make very relevant and contributions to the work of Parliament.

In this vein, it is our hope that Parliament would collaborate with the media, which create a communication link between the people and their representatives. This is necessary in ensuring transparency, which is a necessary ingredient for Good Governance.

The media has played a vital role in exposing near-embarrassing situations for the country, such as the infamous CNT Loan (Supplier's Credit).

We must see a new Parliament that would at all time seek to uphold the good name of Ghana. We pray that all members of this fourth Legislature of the Fourth Republic would raise standards in their daily parliamentary work.

Their colleagues on the Appointments Committee have raised the stakes. They cannot lower it. They must not. We, on our part shall continue to play our watchdog role and give a voice to the voiceless.

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