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23.03.2006 General News

Kufuor gives his assent to two Bills


Accra, March 23, GNA - President John Agyekum Kufuor has signed into law the Internal Revenue Amendment Act and the Ghana National Commission on Children (GNCC) Act, his Press Secretary, announced at a Castle press briefing on Thursday. Press Secretary Kwabena Agyepong said with the assent to the GNCC Act by the President, the Commission now becomes a department under the Ministry of Women and Children's Affairs. He said in the pipeline for the assent of President Kufuor was the Minerals and Mining Act, which was received from the Speaker of Parliament on Wednesday, March 22 2006.

Mr Agyepong denied claims by some Leading Members of the Minority National Democratic Congress (NDC) that the Government had stripped Former President Jerry John Rawlings of his entitled out-of-office benefits. The allegation comes in the wake of the Government's announced restoration of courtesies it took away from Former President Rawlings. "Government has and continue to work according to the dictates of the Greenstreet Report. Courtesies are discretionary and not part of the Report", Mr Agyepong stated.

The Greenstreet Committee was set up to draw up the condition of service for high government functionaries and their benefits when on retirement. He said it was also untrue that their decision to restore the courtesies was as a result of international pressure. This was not based on any pressure either from outside or within. It should not also be seen as an attempt to gag anybody, he said.

Mr Agyepong said it was the expectation of President Kufuor that local Ghanaian businessmen would re-direct their capital into agro-business, in view of the enormous opportunities in that sector. President Kufuor is scheduled to inaugurate Compagnie Fruitier Agricultural Project, a foreign company, at Kasunya, near Asutuare, which is into large-scale production of pineapple and banana on Friday. The Company employs 1,000 Ghanaians for pineapple and 1,500 for banana production. Mr Agyepong said as part of the Government's continued push towards the modernisation of the country's agriculture, two privately operated modern industrial starch factories would soon come on stream at Amanten near Atebubu in Brong Ahafo Region and Hohoe in the Volta Region.