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 Ken Agyapong appeals to NPP MPs not to boycott 2023 budget

New Patriotic Party (NPP) Member of Parliament (MP) for Assin Central in the Central Region, Kennedy Agyapong has appealed to all majority caucus MPs to attend and participate fully in the 2023 budget presentation, related discussions, debate and approval.

He described as unfortunate and regrettable the stance taken by some aggrieved NPP MPs to neither attend the sitting nor have anything to do with subsequent parliamentary discussions and debate on the 2023 Budget should Minister for Finance, Ken Ofori-Atta be the Minister presenting it to the House.

Agyapong who is aspiring to lead the NPP as presidential candidate in 2024 made the appeal in a statement issued today.

Ofori-Atta, is expected to present to Parliament the 2023 Budget and Economic Policy of the government on Thursday, November 24, 2022.

He will be presenting the budget to Parliament for and on behalf of President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo on the authority of Article 179(1) of Ghana’s Constitution of 1992, which commands the President to “cause to be prepared and laid before Parliament at least one month before the end of the financial year, estimates of the revenues and expenditure of the Government of Ghana for the following financial year.”

Agyapong wants the aggrieved MPs to abide by the agreement reached with the president to allow Ofori-Atta present the budget, secure passage of Appropriations Bill as well as conclude ongoing International Monetary Fund (IMF) negotiations before revisiting their concerns.

Since the Majority Group issued a statement on the agreement, he sees the insistence by some MPs not to attend tomorrow’s budget presentation as an attempt to blackmail or unduly force the hands of the President and or undermine his authority and agenda for Ghanaians.

“That cannot be right. The President is our leader and deserves the full benefit of the doubt if any.

“In any case, we have all been elected as MPs to serve the best interests of the people of our individual and collective constituencies,” he said.

The Assin Central MP said given the crippling economic crisis facing Ghanaians and businesses, it is the highest level of insensitivity toward the plight of the nation and her people for any elected representative or group of elected representatives to use their public offices to attempt to hold hostage efforts to address the economic problems facing all of the country.

Instead, Agyapong stated that the patriotic, urgent, compassionate and proper thing to do is first to help the government pass its budget and then later confront and address, if they must, the issue of who is fit or not fit to lead the Ministry of Finance.

“These are very challenging global times, with escalating energy and food prices pushing millions in Africa and elsewhere into extreme poverty and threatening the internal security of many nations, including ours.
“Ghanaians need, therefore, their elected representatives to show up for work and help them survive the worsening global economic turmoil. It is not the time to play political games or feed egos.

“I firmly believe that if there is ever any time that Ghanaians expect us to do our duty to Ghana unconditionally, it is now.
“We must not and cannot sacrifice that responsibility to our people on the side issue of who presents the 2023 Budget to Parliament, ”he noted.

Agyapong appealed to the aggrieved MPs to show leadership and demonstrate solidarity with the struggling masses by turning out in their numbers to support the President’s proposed plan to put Ghana back on the path of economic recovery and triumph.

He called on every NPP MP to preserve and ensure that the agenda of the Akufo-Addo government for Ghana succeeds; otherwise, the people of Ghana will have no reason to return the NPP to power in 2024.

“By this statement, I am also calling on the good people of Ghana to keep the faith and trust that the NPP government has the right plan, strategy, and requisite expertise to steer our country out of the prevailing economic headwinds,” he said.

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