By Maxwell Ofori
The Member of Parliament (MP) for Tamale Central, who is also the Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu, has suggested to the government to consider drafting legislation and laying it before Parliament in a form, limiting to 65 the number of ministers a president can appoint.
The Minority Leader was speaking at the launch of a five-year Public Sector Strategic Reform policy, held at the Accra International Conference Center yesterday.
The Legislator, who articulated his suggestion to the admiration of the dignitaries at the launch, earned himself loud applause at the end of his submission.
“I cannot assume my seat without provoking, at least, one little political controversy. Mr President, the size of [the] government we need, as the country to take a collective, consensual position, should be by a legislation supported by two-thirds majority of Parliament; that at no point again in our county’s history, will we accept ministers exceeding 65, and it should run for all governments and for all presidents.
“Mr President, I may share the mathematics with you. If you take the decentralised provisions of the Constitution, regional ministers and deputy ministers times two, that gives you some twenty, cabinet ministers, under article 78, 79, not exceeding 21, with your good self in the chair, with the Vice President times two, gives you 42, that gives you some sixty-two ministers of state, plus the President having an opportunity to appoint three other ministers to fulfill what his policy objectives may be.
“This, I urge you to ponder over, as we move forward as a country,” he suggested, mistakenly referring to President Akufo-Addo as Mr Speaker, causing the dignitaries to break into laughter.
He lamented what he termed as a bloated public service, adding that the country had gone beyond qualitative and quantitative reforms, comparing Ghana to Côte d’Ivoire.
However, Mr Haruna assured the President of the unflinching support of the Minority side in that regard.
He further commended President Akufo-Addo for his fight against corruption, especially, with the setting up of the office of the Special Prosecutor, but swiftly added that the nation awaits the outcome.