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General News of Monday, 17 December 2018


I never assaulted Sam George – Ayorkor Botchwey

Foreign Affairs Minister, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, has said that she never assaulted or made an attempt to slap Member of Parliament (MP) for Ningo-Prampram, Samuel George Nartey following a heated argument in Parliament on Monday, 17 December 2018.

There was a brawl between Ms Botchwey and North Tongu MP, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, within the premises of parliament as Mr Nartey pulled his phone to record the altercation.

This infuriated Ms Botchwey who lunged at Mr Nartey, who was apparently videoing the whole brawl on his mobile phone, with the intention of stopping him from doing so.

Mr Nartey was heard afterwards saying he would report to the Speaker that he had been assaulted by Ms Botchwey.

Ms Botchwey, later told Class FM’s Parliamentary Correspondent, Ekow Annan, that : “As we were having that heated conversation, Sam George had his phone up and recording it, that is a violation of privacy, that is not acceptable. Why is everybody talking about my stretching my hand? To do what? To hit him? To assault him? Why would I do that?”.

She said she was questioning why Mr Nartey was recording what ensued and added that she raised her arm as “a gesture but it definitely was not an attempt to assault him (Mr Nartey) or to slap him”.

The raucous exchange between the two lawmakers from either side of the house, ensued after Mr Ablakwa accused the government of allegedly inflating the cost ($12 million) of a six-bedroom residence for Ghana’s new mission in Norway.

The encounter took place within the corridors of the house in the presence of the media after the Speaker had suspended sitting.

Accra News’ Richard Appiah Sarpong, who was in parliament, said the Minority believes the property has been inflated by $8 million dollars.

He reported that a document in possession of the Minority revealed that a previous buyer, Lillian Olsson, bought the property in 2014 for $2 million and sold it in 2017 to an unknown buyer for $3 million.

This accusation by the Minority forced the Speaker to suspend sitting for further deliberations.

Ms Botchwey and Mr Nartey continued the debate within parliament’s corridors, resulting in the brawl.