This Week In Parliament [18-21 July, 2017]

Highlights of what MPs discussed from 18-21 July, 2017

  • Office of Special Prosecutor Bill, 2017 goes through first reading

The government’s much awaited Office of Special Prosecutor Bill went through a first reading in Parliament this week. Although passage of this bill into law could go without hitches, some MPs in the minority objected on the basis of procedural rules disregarded in tabling the bill.

According to Minority Chief Whip, Mubarak Muntaka (MP, Asawase), the [Parliament] House is supposed to have a certain number of MPs present to debate such bills (motion) that are brought to the chamber. Motion was adopted nevertheless. MPs in the minority demanded that copies of the said bill be made available for their perusal, which the Speaker affirmed, and directed the Clerk of Parliament to make copies of the bill for MPs.

  • Office fire renders Job 600 workers stranded

The Parliament office complex, ‘’Job 600’’, on Wednesday was locked down briefly following a fire incident in one of the offices on the 10th floor. According to Ms Kate Addo, Director of Public Affairs at Parliament, the fire was caused by a ‘’power trip’’ in a photocopier machine from an earlier power outage the previous day. No major damage was caused as the incident happened after close of business. Proceedings in the chamber started later as authorities finalised investigation into the cause of fire.

The Job 600 Complex has offices for leadership of Parliament, 275 MPs and their secretaries, and some parliamentary service staffers.

  • Juapong Textiles to benefit from government stimulus package

The Minister of Trade and Industry, Mr. Alan Kyeremanteng appeared before members of parliament (MP) this week on the invitation of MP for North Tongu, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa. The MP questioned the minister about progress of work on private partnership arrangement with Volta Star Textiles Limited at Juapong in the Volta Region. The state-owned textile company is in financial distress and needs a capital injection of GH¢20 million to make it fully functional. In his answers to the MP, the minister told [Parliament] House that the company is among some 225 local companies in distress including state-owned ones which will benefit from a government stimulus package.