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The Presidential Circus

Comment: Get The True Story About......

Jato Julor(J.J.)Rawlings
2009-05-25 16:37:18
Comment to:

Brig.Okyere, get the true story about the Begyina Sekyi Hughes saga and don't allow yourself to be deceived by the Fiifi Kweteys in the country.

If Begyina Sekyi Hughes can be classified as a thief, then Alban Bagbin and his deputy are also thieves unless they have licences to steal.

Brig. Okyere, I know you love this 'econmini ringtone' but you have still not been able to purchase one because of its shortage on the market.

I promise however to send you one on your birthday as a birthday present and I know how happy you will be.

Last Updated- May 25, 2009 9:19 GMT | 200 views | 0 Comments

CID invites ex-speaker

The former Speaker of Parliament, Mr Ebenezer Begyina Sekyi Hughes, has been invited by the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) of the Ghana Police Service to explain why he illegally took away state property on his retirement from office.

According to police sources, Mr Hughes was to report to the CID today but the appointment had to be rescheduled for tomorrow because the day is a public holiday.

The sources told the Daily Graphic after efforts by the CID to get Mr Hughes had proved difficult, the Western Regional Office of the Bureau of National Investigations (BNI) was asked to invite him.

Mr Hughes has, however, claimed that whatever he took away from his official residence upon his retirement was in line with a memo submitted to the House by the Clerk of Parliament.

Responding to a parliamentary ad hoc committee report on items he took away from the official residence, the former Speaker said the memo, which was submitted to the Parliamentary Service Board on November 4, 2008, stated, “Following advice received on the soft furnishing items supplied to the leadership, cash equivalent of items not supplied have been commuted for the leadership of the house.”

He said the clerk concluded that a total sum of GH¢195,200 would be required to implement the board’s decision on the commutation of non-procured items in the approved list of soft furnishing entitlements of leadership, excluding the Speaker.

He further indicated that the “Parliamentary Service Board, on 15th December, 2008, at its 47th Regular Meeting, approved the memo in all material respects and ordered payment of the sum of GH¢195,200 to the leadership” .

He then concluded, “From this, it cannot be any more clear than that the Parliamentary Service Board intended that soft and hard items of furnishings provided for the leadership, whether in private or official residences, were to be retained.”

Those who were to benefit from the GH¢195,200 furnishing package were the Majority Leader, the Minority Leader, the First and the Second Deputy Speakers, he said.

The rest were the Deputy Majority and Minority leaders, the Majority and Minority Chief Whips, the First Deputy Majority and Minority whips and the Second Majority and Minority whips.

In a letter to the Parliamentary Service Board dated May 15, 2009, Mr Hughes said for Parliament to come to a fair view of the matters under consideration, “it must satisfy itself from the relevant waybills that each of the said items was delivered and duly received by the Speaker”.

Recalling his stay at the State House as a guest, he said contractors were engaged by Parliament to re-roof the property, during which the contractors removed the roofing sheets but for a time failed to replace them with new ones.

“One weekend during our absence, there was a heavy downpour which completely flooded the State House. On our return to Accra on Sunday night, it became impossible to access the premises,” he said.

According to him, the clerk was immediately summoned and he expressed his utter disgust and horror at the substantial damage caused.

He said hotel accommodation was arranged for the family for the night but it was declined.

Mr Hughes noted that after an investigation into the matter, the Development Office and the contractors were queried for negligence that had occasioned substantial damage to property in the State House for which they apologised, saying, “1 was to be offered compensation for personal losses which 1 declined to pursue.”

On his official residence, he noted that he was invited to furnish it to meet the family’s requirements within acceptable financial limits set by the Parliamentary Service Board.

He said the understanding was that items procured could be retained by the Speaker, as had happened on previous occasions when the leadership of the House left office, which he said was confirmed to him by the clerk.

“It is important to point out that at all material times there was not a responsible officer appointed by Parliament in the official residence who received items brought to the official residence. There was no officer who issued items out to the parliamentary domestic servants and accounted for them,” he stated.

Mr Hughes noted that the Speaker travelled extensively for official duties both in Ghana and abroad and that at all material times, it was the parliamentary staff, including security staff, who were in charge of the official residence.

He said those items, if supplied, must have been used by the Speaker, his family and, indeed, the parliamentary staff for a period of four years, during which “damage to items occurred, breakage could not be ruled out, not to mention wear and tear”.

He stated that the “compendium of the inventory of furnishing items referred to in your list does not take into account all relevant matters adumbrated above”.

He said although he left his official residence on February 26, 2009, the inspection conducted at the bungalow was on March 3, 2009.

Mr Hughes, however, said the present board was perfectly entitled to revisit the practice if it so desired, review it or even scrap it all together.

“It is submitted further that at the 13th sitting of the third meeting of the fourth session of the Fourth Parliament of the Fourth Republic on Tuesday, January 6, 2009, Parliament approved the report of the Presidential committee on emoluments subject to some recommendations for the future,” he said.

According to him, the recommendations were contained in the Review Report submitted by Parliament to the Presidency and pointed out that specifically on the Speaker on retirement, “Parliament, inter alia, recommended a free four-bedroom plus an outhouse residential befitting the status of a former Speaker in a location of his choice.”

“In the light of Parliament’s own decision, it is submitted that it does not lie in the mouth of the same body or its Parliamentary Service Board to raise queries about items which, by its own conduct and from expressed approvals, it intended that the leadership should retain.

“Be it as it may, the Parliamentary Service Board of the Fourth Parliament of the Fourth Republic did not disturb or undermine the existing practice whereby Speakers of Parliament, leadership and other senior management staff retained soft and hard furnishings on their retirement. The minutes of the Parliamentary Service Board are available for scrutiny,” Mr Hughes concluded.

Source: Daily Graphic

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05-24 23:15
Get The True Story About......
Jato Julor(J.J.)Rawlings
05-25 16:37
richard duncan
05-25 11:36
05-26 02:27
05-26 02:31