President Nana Akufo-addo
Parliament is no longer pursuing plans to construct a 450-seater chamber for Members of Parliament (MPs) at the cost of $200 million which has sparked huge public uproar.
President Akufo-Addo is also reported not to be in favour of the project saying “it is not on the country’s radar currently”.
Information Minister Kojo Oppong Nkrumah has said Cabinet has not received proposal from the Legislature concerning the chamber for consideration.
“The executive arm of government has not been engaged on this new chamber at all. Nana Akufo-Addo has not gone to cut sod for any new chamber. The Finance Minister also has not released money for a new chamber, so the claim that money has been made available for the new parliament construction is not true. The allocation was for some works in Parliament and it was clear in the budget,” he said on Starr FM.
Acting Director of Public Affairs of Parliament, Kate Addo, said on radio yesterday that Parliament is no longer pursuing the agenda of constructing a new chamber.
She said on Peace FM that plans had not been concluded that Parliament was going to build a new chamber.
“There is no chamber to drop because it is not going ahead,” she said, stressing that even though there is the need for a new chamber block for parliamentarians if Ghanaians are against it “we are not going to continue.”
“We are thinking that it was a very lofty idea, obviously if it did not go down well with the people, we are ready to accept but it doesn’t mean the need was or is not there. It is just that it is not one of the things Ghanaians are looking for now,” she added.
Quite in the same vein, the Majority Leader, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, at a press briefing, indicated that Parliament was ready to listen to the interest of Ghanaians before a final decision would be taken on the construction of the proposed 450-seater new chamber block for parliamentarians.
“I would strongly suggest that if the people we represent insist strongly that we shelve this idea of a new chamber, why not? We would do it because after all, we represent them and cannot force anything on them,” the majority leader said at the press briefing.
When Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu was contacted on the idea of abandoning the project yesterday, he said that the Parliamentary Service Board was scheduled to meet at 5 pm yesterday to take a final decision on that and when that is done it would be communicated to the public.
By Thomas Fosu Jnr