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21.01.2005 General News

Seven Ministerial nominees vetted in one day

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Accra, Jan. 21,GNA - Seven persons nominated by President John Agyekum Kufuor for Ministerial positions on Friday appeared before the Parliamentary Appointments Committee.

They were Mr Joseph Henry Mensah, Senior Minister-Designate; Mr Felix Owusu-Agyepong, Minister of Parliamentary Affairs-Designate; Mr Yaw Osafo-Maafo, Minister of Education and Sports-Designate and Papa Owusu-Ankomah, Minister of The Interior- Designate.

The others were Mr Kwadwo Baah-Wiredu, Minister Finance and Economic Planning - Designate, Dr Kwame Addo-Kufuor, Minister of Defence-Designate and Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, Minister of Foreign Affairs -Designate.

All the nominees are Members of Parliament and had held Ministerial portfolios during the first term of President John Agyekum Kufuor's Administration.

Mr Mensah, Papa Owusu-Ankomah and Mr Agyepong have all held the position of the Majority Leader and Minister of Parliamentary Affairs. Mr Mensah, an Economist, described his position as the President's brainchild but in reality he chaired the Economic Management Team. At the age of 76, he said he felt terrific and could make the run even as the Member for Sunyani East.

Mr Felix Owusu-Adjapong, a Professional Surveyor and Lawyer, has been re-nominated to position he held in the previous dispensation. He is seen at the Presidential mole in the Legislature.

But he said a good rapport between the Legislature and the Executive depended on an effective Minister of Parliamentary Affairs. Mr Owusu-Adjepong is the Member for Akim Swedru. Papa Owusu-Ankomah, a Lawyer, is seeking his fourth Ministerial scroll as the Minister of The Interior.

He began as a Sports Ministers, replaced Mr Mensah as Minister of Parliamentary Affairs and then moved to the Office of Attorney-General and Minister of Justice.

He has been elected thrice as the Member for Sekondi. Mr Baah-Wiredu, is also seeking his third Ministerial scroll after being in-charge of Local Government and Rural Development and Education, Youth and Sports.

The three-time Member for Konongo is a Chartered Accountant. He was a very vocal backbencher during the Second Parliament, which was controlled by the National Democratic Congress.

Dr Addo-Kufuor, the Cambridge-trained Medical Officer, was the Defence Minister during the first term of President Kufuor's tenure and has been nominated to the same portfolio. He is the Member for Manhyia. Nana Akufo-Addo, the Minister of Foreign Affairs - Designate, is the Member for Abuakua South.

He was first nominated to the Office of the Attorney General and Minister of Justice before becoming the county's Chief Diplomat. He is eldest son of Ghana's second President Edward Akuffo-Addo, has represented the people of Abuakwa South on three Parliamentary occasions.

A Committee of the Whole House would determine their fate when the House resumes for its second meeting in February.

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