General News of Thursday, 21 June 2012
Deputy Youth and Sports Minister Dr Omane Boamah and Minority Spokesperson on Sport Isaac Asiamah Thursday traded insults over contradictory figures presented by two Sports ministers in respect of the 2010 World Cup held in South Africa.
A report submitted by former Sports Minister Akua Sena Dansua, in November 2010, on the expenses on the tournament, varies significantly from one submitted by the current Minister of Sports, Mr Kofi Humado.
Whilst Sena Dansua’s report indicates a total expenditure of 7,195,182.40 million US Dollars, Mr Humado’s, presented to Parliament this week, shows a total of 16,998,955.73 million US Dollars was spent on the tournament, indicating a difference of $9,803,772.97.
Mr Asiamah who is the Member of Parliament for Atwima Mponua, told Joy FM’s Super Morning Show host Kojo Oppong-Nkrumah, there were questions to answer.
He said it was baffling that such a gaping difference existed between the two reports emanating from the same ministry on the same tournament.
Mr Humado explained on the floor of the House that Sena Dansua’s report was an interim report. A message she sent to Joy FM on the matter said same.
But Mr Asiamah rejected the submission arguing Parliament does not receive interim reports and that a report submitted in November on a tournament played in June/July could not be an interim report.
In any case, he said, the former minister never said the report she was submitting to the House was an interim report. Even if that was a draft report, he argued, the difference as regards specific items on the two reports raised questions that begged for answers.
For instance, appearance fees on Sena Dansua’s report to Parliament was $4.2 million whilst Mr Humado’s report gives a figure of $5.925 million, showing a difference of $1.725 million.
“Appearance fees is supposed to be fixed because that is for the playing body and of course the technical team. Why will that differ”? Mr Asiamah asked.
Other notable differences between the two reports submitted by the two ministers was Per Diem; $186,650 as against $269,800, and Protocol; $100,000 as against $150,000.
The MP insisted that since the ministers were not offering satisfactory answers to questions regarding the huge discrepancies, the President must set up a probe into the expenditure on the tournament.
But responding to the issues raised by Mr Asiamah, the Deputy Sports Minister said the NPP MP was being mischievous.
The crux of his argument was that the questions posed the two ministers were different and therefore naturally resulted in two different answers.
“Every intelligent Ghanaian will know that the statement arising out of the honourable Kofi Humado’s appearance in Parliament – and being pushed as a contradiction of what honourable Akua Sena Dansua also put before Parliament - is just borne out of mischief,” Dr Boamah said.
The question to Sena Dansua, according to him, was “how much money has been spent on the Ghana contingent at the 2010 World Cup to date,” whilst that put to Mr Humado “Was to ask the minister for Youth and Sports the expenditure breakdown of government allocation and private sector contributions for Ghana’s participation in the 2010 World Cup competition in South Africa.”
“Every intelligent person,” he said, “must clearly know that there is a distinction,” he said.
Dr Boamah said an MP who wants clarity on any matter must “intelligently craft the question such that appropriate answers will be given.”
He said he had requested a detailed report from the chief director of the Sports Ministry on both the 2010 World Cup as well as the 2006’s, so a comparison could be drawn.
“I feel totally ashamed … as a young politician when I hear a young colleague speaking this way; he is saying that he is intelligent and people should be more intelligent; for God's sake, he has not even seen the report we are talking about - he is saying that he has now requested for the report from his chief director - this person calls himself intelligent person; somebody who has not even seen a report and he is commenting on the report,” Mr Isaac Asiamah replied.
He maintained it was misleading to create the impression that Sena Dansua’s report was submitted in the middle of the tournament.
He said whilst the tournament was held in June, the minister (Sena Dansua) provided her answers to Parliament in November - four clear months after the tournament ended.
The Atwima Mponua MP said the Minority will continue to expose impropriety in the management of the country’s resources and that it was left to the government to act demonstrably, its commitment to being accountable to the people of Ghana.