General News of Wednesday, 9 July 2003


Stand-In Minister Embarrased By parliament

The deputy minister of Communications, David Gyau, was yesterday heckled in Parliament when he was unable to answer supplementary questions concerning his ministry.

The sector minister, Albert Kan Dapaah, was said to be attending to an emergency meeting at an unnamed place, according to the deputy Majority leader, Abraham Ossei Aidoo.

Mr. Gyau, who made his maiden appearance in the Chamber since his appointment a couple of months ago, had the unpleasant duty of consulting the deputy leader on a number of occasions – thus drawing sarcastic comments from the floor of the House.

On another occasion when Mr. Aidoo rose to save him from further exposure of his limited knowledge about the ministry, he was ordered to resume his seat by the speaker, Mr. Peter Ala Adjetey, saying, “I have not called you.”

The minority members, realizing the deputy minister’s weakness, bombarded him with supplementary questions to which he replied, “Mr. Speaker, I will require prior notice to this question.”

Let off the hook by the speaker Mr. Gyau was further embarrassed when a voice from the minority bench bade him farewell saying, “don’t come here anymore.”

In a written answer to three questions which stood in the names of the members for Wa Central, M. A. Seidu and Fanteakwa, Samuel Ofosu-Ampofo, the minister said in line with the terms of the agreement between Telenor Management Partner (TMP) of Norway, Ghana Telecom will expand its fixed network to enable it provide a minimum of 400,000 fixed lines by 2005, in order to extend telephone services to every town with a senior secondary school, teacher training college or university.

Under those conditions, the minister explained, many settlements in all districts including health centres, clinics and security installations will be served with the facility.