The Member of Parliament for the Bawku Central constituency in the Upper East Region, Mahama Ayariga says he is not aware that Minority MPs took money to approve President Nana Akufo-Addo’s new ministerial nominees.
He said though the allegations are being bandied around after the nominees were approved by the Majority and many Minority MPs despite an explicit order to them by the National Democratic Congress leadership to reject the ministers, he has no evidence to the effect that money changed hands for votes.
Speaking about the issue on The Point of View on Citi TV, the Bawku Central lawmaker said the approval of the nominees may largely be due to the extensive lobbying by the nominees.
“The numbers that voted to approve the nominees shocked me, but I can tell you that the nominees lobbied very hard, and it is one of the reasons that informed the [NDC] party to issue a statement to the Minority not to approve the nominees because the party found out that the Minority MPs were not finding it easy to resist the lobbying.”
He sharply added: “It wasn’t entirely money because I heard people say some members took money from the nominees, but I don’t have evidence that people took money, and so I am careful about saying things like that. But I know that the nominees lobbied very hard and appealed to the relationships that they have with people in the Chamber.”
All six nominees were approved after a secret vote on Friday, March 24, flouting the directive of the NDC leadership.
The approval implied that Adansi Asokwa MP, K.T Hammond is set to become the Minister of Trade and Industry after he is sworn into office by the President with the Member of Parliament for Nhyiaeso, Dr. Stephen Amoah serving as his deputy.
Bryan Acheampong is heading to the Ministry of Food and Agriculture, Stephen Asamoah Boateng to the Chieftaincy and Religious Affairs Ministry, Osei Bonsu Amoah to the Ministry of Local Government, Decentralisation and Rural Development, and Dr Mohammed Amin Adam as a Minister of State at the Ministry of Finance.
The Minority MPs have come under fire after the approval for betraying the leadership of the NDC.