The Public Accounts Committee of Parliament will in the coming days haul one of the Deputy Trade Minister’s, Ahomka Lindsay to retract a false statement he made with reference to operations at the Komenda Sugar factory or be referred to the Privileges Committee of Parliament for sanctions.
This followed a petition filed by a former Secretary of the Komenda Sugar Project Management Board, Ransford Chatman Vanni-Amoah.
In the petition to the Public Accounts Committee Chairman dated August 31, the former board member said the minister’s answer, that the Sugar Factory never produced Sugar and the former management only faked news for propaganda, “was a deliberate attempt to mislead the Committee and the good people of Ghana”.
Chairman of the Public Accounts Committee, James Avedzi told XYZ News “we have not decided on the day to sit on it, but definitely we will be sitting on it. If he realizes that he has made a mistake and he is therefore using the opportunity to redraw the statement, then we will not recommend anything to the house for him to be called before the privileges committee.
Mr. Avedzi however cautioned that “if those opportunities are given to him and then he still insists it depends on what will happen at the committee level; a decision would be taken on whether we should recommend him to the house, for him to be brought before the privileges committee”.
Powers of the Appointments Committee
Meanwhile Governance expert and Dean of Graduate Studies and Research at the Institute of Local Governance Studies, Eric Oduro Osae has warned the deputy Minister he could face prosecution if he joked with the case against him.
“Parliaments Appointments Committee, they have the powers of a court and so they’ll have the opportunity of referring the person to the house; and if the person is a member of the committee, then they would refer the person to the house to be disciplined by the appropriate committee”
He further explained that “if the person is not a member of the house, parliament can make recommendations for the Attorney General to prosecute the person under our criminal laws of Ghana as a criminal offence; because perjury is a criminal offence”.
According to him, parliament could also commit the person for perjury if he/she is not a member of parliament. Furthermore, the house could fine the person or debar him/her from entering the premises of the august house. One could also be referred to the police CID for further action if the house finds appropriate.