|Mahama Ayariga ( MP for Bawku Central )|
All eyes will be on Parliament today as the Member of Parliament (MP) for Bawku Central, Mr Mahama Ayariga, is billed to render an unqualified apology to Parliament to purge himself of the contempt of Parliament charge against him.
The special committee that investigated the bribery allegation he made against the chairman and some members of the Appointments Committee of Parliament (ACP) found him guilty of contempt of Parliament and recommended that he should render an unqualified apology.
But Mr Ayariga’s apology to Parliament last Thursday, which he couched in the following words: “If you say I should apologise, I apologise”, was deemed to be a ‘qualified’ apology.
Subsequently, the Speaker of Parliament, Professor Aaron Mike Oquaye, said in view of the development, he would give a ruling and directive the following day.
But the Daily Graphic learnt that Mr Ayariga had prepared a written apology, which he was to deliver to Parliament last Friday.
The Second Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Mr Alban Bagbin, who presided over the second part of the sitting last Friday, said there was an outstanding issue regarding the bribery case.
The Joe Ghartey Committee
Parliament set up the five-member ad hoc committee on January 31, 2017, to investigate the allegation that each member of the Appointments Committee of Parliament (ACP) was given GH¢3,000 bribe by the then Minister designate for Energy, Mr Boakye Agyarko, to facilitate his approval.
The committee is chaired by the Member of Parliament (MP) for Esikadu/Ketan (NPP) and former Second Deputy Speaker, Mr Joe Ghartey, with Mr Ben Abdallah Banda, MP for Offinso South (NPP); Ms Ama Pomaa Boateng, MP for Juaben (NPP); Mr Magnus Kofi Amoatey, MP for Yilo Krobo (NDC), and Mr Benson Tongo Baba, MP for Talensi (NDC), as the other members.
The terms of reference for the committee was to investigate the allegation that the Chairman of the ACP, Mr Joseph Osei-Owusu, had taken money from Mr Agyarko, and given same to the Minority Chief Whip and Deputy Ranking member on the ACP, Alhaji Muntaka Mohammed-Mubarak, to be given to Minority members on the committee.
It is to inquire whether attempts had been made to bribe members of the ACP, and also look into the remit of complaints and assertions made by Mr Osei-Owusu about the matter.
The committee concluded that Mr Agyarko had not given any money to Mr Osei-Owusu to be given to the Minority Chief Whip, Alhaji Muntaka Mohammed-Mubarak, for the purpose of bribing members of the ACP.
Besides, it said there was no attempt to bribe members of the ACP.