Debates of 8 Mar 2007

PRAYERS 11:35 a.m.




Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:35 a.m.
Hon. Members, we have the Votes and Proceedings for Friday 2nd March, 2007.
Mr. Joseph Y. Chireh 11:35 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, on page 13, the meeting of the Committee on Environment, Science and Technology -- “Attendance”, item 2, we have Mr. Mustapha Ahmed, but I know the man is a Major (retd) and a doctor at the same time. His titles should be appropriately captured.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:35 a.m.
Very well, the Clerk's Office will take note and effect the correction. I think this is the only correction and the Votes and Proceedings will be taken as a true record of proceedings on Friday.
STATEMENTS 11:35 a.m.

Mrs. Gifty Eugenia Kusi (NPP -- Tarkwa -Nsuaem) 11:35 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, today 8th March is International Women Day. It is a very special day in that it is a day set aside to celebrate women for their contributions to the development of their countries and the world in general and also to look
Mrs. Gifty Eugenia Kusi (NPP -- Tarkwa -Nsuaem) 10:45 a.m.
critically at issues that militate against women. It also commemorates women's rights and peace.
International Women's Day is the story of ordinary women as makers of history; it is rooted in the centuries- old struggle of women to participate in society on an equal footing with men. This date is commemorated at the United Nations and is designated as a national holiday in many countries such as Armenia, Belarus, Bulgaria, Kazakhstan, Macedonia, Moldova, Mongolia, Russia, Ukraine, Vietnam and South Africa.
This is an occasion which is marked by women's groups around the world. Even as women on all continents, often divided by national boundaries and by ethnic, linguistic, cultural, economic and political differences, come together to celebrate our day, we can look back to a tradition that represents at least nine decades of struggle for equality, justice, peace and development.
Mr. Speaker, the United Nations' theme for International Women's Day for this year is “Ending Impunity for Violence against Women and Girls” and I believe that there could not have been a better theme. The theme is consistent with our commitment and efforts to reduce, if not eliminate, domestic violence, which has culminated in the passage of the Domestic Violence Act.
Mr. Speaker, the Declaration on the Elimination of Violence against Women (1993) defines violence against women as “any act of gender-based violence that results in, or is likely to result in, physical, sexual or mental harm or suffering to women, including threats of such acts, coercion or arbitrary deprivation of liberty, whether occurring in public or in private life.”
This encompasses “physical, sexual and psychological violence occurring in the family and in the general community,

including battering, sexual abuse of children, dowry-related violence, rape, female genital mutilation and other traditional practices harmful to women, non-spousal violence and violence related to exploitation, sexual harassment and intimidation at work, in educational institutions and elsewhere, trafficking in women, forced prostitution, and violence perpetrated or condoned by the state.”

In all societies, to a greater or lesser degree, women and girls are subjected to physical, sexual and psychological abuse that cuts across lines of income, class and culture.

The problem of violence against women manifests itself in a terrifying array of forms throughout the world. Women experience physical or mental abuse throughout their lifecycle, in infancy, childhood and/or adolescence, or during adulthood or older age. The experience of violent intrusion or the threat of such intrusion is a common thread in the fabric of women's everyday lives in societies around the world.

Mr. Speaker, studies indicate that the menace of violence against women is on the ascendancy. According to UNICEF, 100 million to 140 million girls and women have undergone some form of female genital mutilation; a practice which is still carried out in 28 African countries, despite the fact that it is outlawed in a number of these nations.

Research results indicate that between 10 per cent and 50 per cent of women have been physically abused by an intimate partner in their lifetime and that between 12 per cent and 25 per cent of women have experienced attempted or completed forced sex by an intimate partner or ex-

partner at some time in their lives. Mr. Speaker, up to 69 per cent of women report have been physically assaulted and up to 47 per cent of women report that their first sexual intercourse was forced.

Mr. Speaker, the physical and psychological effects of violence on victims cannot be overemphasized. In addition to the hundreds of thousands of lives destroyed, reports show that violence against women has been linked to a number of immediate and long-term conditions, including physical injury, chronic pain syndromes, depression and suicidal behaviour. Partner violence can also affect a woman's earning, job performance and her ability to keep a job.

Violence against women is an obstacle to the achievement of the objectives of equality, development and peace. Violence against women both violates and impairs or nullifies the enjoyment by women of their human rights and fundamental freedoms.

Violence against women arises from a combination of individual biological and psychological characteristics as well as social, economic and political factors. The low social and economic status of women can be both a cause and a consequence of violence against women. Abusive practices against women have frequently been and are still being justified in the context of cultural norms, religious beliefs and unfounded “scientific theories” and assumptions.

This situation is the result of society's attitudes towards women and efforts to “keep women in their place.”

Mr. Speaker, violence against women is one issue that must necessarily be addressed if our nation and for that matter the world in general is to move forward in peace. There are a lot of things that can be done to eliminate this bitter injustice

against women. Spreading the word, breaking down the taboos and exposing the violence that takes place among us is the first step towards effective action to reduce this awful, cruel thing called domestic violence in our own societies.

Mr. Speaker, violence against women is a social problem that warrants an immediate coordinated response from multiple sectors. I believe that the social and political institutions that have the mandate and responsibility to protect the citizens of the country to execute their responsibility to the letter. It is sad, however, to note that sometimes social institutions put in place to protect citizens too often blame or ignore the victims of violence.

It, however, gives me pleasure to note that the Domestic Violence Victims and Support Unit (DOVVSU) of the Ghana Police Service has done well in providing redress and support for victims of domestic violence.

Mr. Speaker, while economic disparity and legal inequality are known to contribute to incidents of violence against women, it is obvious that violence arises from ignorance, the failure to understand such fundamental realities as the oneness of the human race and the mistaken notion that force is the only honorable way to resolve conflicts. Therefore any attempt to curb violence that does not educate individuals to overcome gender prejudice will certainly fall short.

The government and other stake- holders can also help by organizing, and supporting education and training campaigns to raise awareness about violence against women as a violation of women's enjoyment of their human rights.

With increasing illiteracy among women in the developing world, it is vitally important to reemphasize the role of education everywhere if violence against women is to be controlled. However, the problem of violence cannot truly be resolved unless men are also educated to value women as equal partners. Any effort to protect women against male aggression against women and to curb the menace must involve the early training of boys.

Mr. Speaker, every effort must be made to eliminate this social evil because it threatens world peace. The emancipation of women, the achievement of full equality between the sexes, is one of the most important, though less acknowledged prerequisites of peace. The denial of such equality perpetrates an injustice against one half of the world's population and promotes in men harmful attitudes and habits that are carried from the family to the workplace, to political life, and ultimately to international relations.

There are no grounds, moral, practical, or biological, upon which such denial can be justified. It is only when women are welcomed into full partnership in all fields of human endeavour that the moral and psychological climate will be created in which international peace can emerge.

Thank you, Mr. Speaker, for the opportunity.

D e p u t y M i n i s t e r f o r Wa t e r Resources, Works and Housing (Ms. Cecilia A. Dapaah): Thank you, Mr. Speaker, for giving me the opportunity to contribute to the Statement on the floor. In so doing, I wish to congratulate all women around the world in all colours, shapes and form for the immense contribution to human-kind. The theme, “Ending Impunity for Violence against Women and Girls,” is very apt and timely. This shows and emphasizes that women are still

going through violence, physical, psycho- logical, religious, emotional, spiritual, economic and political.

Mr. Kojo Armah -- rose
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 10:45 a.m.
Member for Evalue Dwira, point of Order?
Mr. Kojo Armah 10:45 a.m.
That is so, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, my hon. Colleague has made a statement that needs a little bit more elucidation for us to give the appropriate responses. She said, “When men go out and they get broken hearts they come home and weep.” I would want her to explain further the nature of the ‘broken heart' and give an example so that we can give the appropriate responses when the time comes -- [Laughter.]
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 10:45 a.m.
Hon. Member for Bantama, I think the men want a clearer picture.
Ms. Dapaah 10:45 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I think I was not ambiguous in my statement. What I said was that, they go out, get broken hearts, be it by other women or colleagues at work, or their peers, I do not know. But
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 10:45 a.m.
Order! Please, allow the hon. Member to make her contribution.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 10:45 a.m.
Hon. Member for Okere, point of Order?
Mr. Adu 10:45 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, it is rather
the opposite. It is rather the women who weep on our shoulders; they try to create problems and we console them.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 10:45 a.m.
Hon. Member, that is not a point of Order. That is your view; she is expressing her views.
Ms. Dapaah 10:45 a.m.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Our own Busumuru Kofi Annan said, and I quote:
“until women occupy their rightful places in society there shall not be any meaningful development.”
In fact, women bring added value to sustainable development. And as we are more than 50 per cent of the population, I believe women should be celebrated for their role as health-givers, solace-givers, and life-givers. Women and girls at times have to forgo their education to even work on the farm and in the home. As mothers, at times when we are waking up our children to do the household chores we tend to wake up the girls first. And I believe all children should be trained to cook, to clean the house and to do all household chores.
And more girls should still be put in
Ms. Dapaah 10:55 a.m.

schools because the figures, according to the Ministry for Women and Children's Affairs (MOWAC0) show that there is no parity yet; it is 0.95 to one boy. So I believe we have a little more way to do.

Ghana is 50 years but we all know that violence against women is as old as human life, and it is time for the total elimination of all forms of violence against women.

Mr. Speaker, women have done and continue to do their bit within the society. For instance, they have contributed professionally, as consultants as well to the society. They have worked very hard in the agricultural sector. In fact, women go to the farm, they sow the seeds, they plant, they reap, they transport the foodstuffs, they process and transport them back to the market to sell and they also go to the further extent of putting food on our table. This is all done by women.

Economically, if we are to check the small and medium-scale enterprises (SMEs) in Ghana, most of them are headed by women and this country is known for its famous markets. In fact, I would dare say that the activities of market women form the barometer of the economic status of this nation and they must not be ignored.

Politically, I would say, as we say in local parlance, it is the women who do the nsamamo politically. When there are rallies, it is the women who go round -- [Interruption] -- ‘Nsamamo' means “the critical mass that go round making sure that there is agitation, people are excited and then the rally ground is ready for take-off”; and I believe this should also be recognised. And most especially, Mr. Speaker, during the struggle for independence and for seats to come to Parliament, et cetera, the women
Ms. Dapaah 10:55 a.m.

contributed financially as well.

They contribute to feeding the teeming masses that go round during the campaign time, they also provide the critical mass of support to we the Members of Parliament who seek re-election or election, and when the men go out to the rallies, when they come home, it is the women who are there to support them to make sure they are comfortably fed and clothed.

So, Mr. Speaker, let us continue to celebrate our women, be they our wives, our mothers, our sisters, our queen-mothers, our hon. Members of Parliament, our colleagues at workplaces, our friends. During this jubilee year and most importantly on this occasion that women are celebrating their Day, I urge all our male colleagues around the nation to pamper the women for if they succeed in pampering the women all other things shall be added unto them.

I say ayekoo to all our women and to all of us women, I say united we stand.

Mr. Speaker, thank you for the opportunity to contribute.
Mr. Lee Ocran (NDC -- Jomoro) 10:55 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I rise to speak and support the Statement.
Mr. Speaker, the International Women's Day was instituted in 1917 by the then Socialist Party of the United States of America and by 1920 the Socialist International had made the celebration worldwide. In the former Eastern Europe during the Soviet era 8th March was a public holiday in all socialist countries. It was a day when women were honoured, women were appreciated, presents and flowers were given to women by the menfolk.
We in Ghana have not given any
prominence to this day. I wonder how many ordinary women even know of this day. I wish to call on our women leaders to try to propagate the day so that we the men would be encouraged on this day to honour our women, honour our mothers, give them presents for the support that they give us in the home.
As for female genital mutilation, I do not think there are many men who would support the act because it is not only cruel to women but it also deprives a certain group of people from the few pleasures that they get. So, Mr. Speaker, with these few words, I speak in support of the motion.
Mr. Kojo Armah (CPP -- Evalue- Gwira) 10:55 a.m.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker, for the opportunity to also support the Statement made by the hon. Member.
Mr. Speaker, as has already been said, the International Women's Day is meant to recognise the contribution of women through national efforts of various countries.
In this country, we can count on the untiring efforts of our women-folk, day and night, in supporting the home, in supporting the national economy and in supporting our political system.
On a day like this we cannot celebrate our womenfolk without also drawing the attention of the nation and particularly of the women themselves to the plight of the several girls selling on the streets of our cities and urban areas. I am particularly worried when I see these girls selling everyday on the streets and wondering whether these girls would ever have education.
I also wonder about the women who
send these girls on the streets to go and sell iced water, chewing gum and things like that, especially the very young ones, as to what they think they are doing to these children. I believe if you want to talk about child abuse, this should be classified as one of the areas of abuse which must be corrected.
Mr. Speaker, this country has sought to protect women over the years and recently we passed the Domestic Violence Bill which they are celebrating. Even though the Bill is not entirely about women I believe it goes a long way to protect the rights of women against abuses in the house as well as the house helps that also suffer abuses at the hands of the mothers and the women who take care of them in the house.
Mr. Speaker, we must also recognise that women also help in the domestic economies of the various homes and particularly for those of us from the Western Region we know what the effect of the collapse of the coconut industry is doing to the education of the children of the Western Region; because the women who tend to deal in this industry do not have much to do now and that has affected education.
Thanks to the capitation grant things are getting reversed but we believe the women have contributed a lot.
I also want to on this day, when we have just celebrated our 50th anniversary, pay tribute to all the women who stood by our founding fathers and the early campaigners to fight for independence. It would be too much to try to mention names, but we must recognise that the women did a lot in the fight for independence and they need to be recognised. Maybe, one of these days we must also try to raise monuments to the womenfolk of this country as well as the women of Africa.
Mr. Kojo Armah (CPP -- Evalue- Gwira) 11:05 a.m.

Mr. Speaker, we must celebrate the Women's Day, we must remind ourselves of the role of our women and we must continue to support the women to play meaningful roles.

My only worry is that some women campaigners who constitute themselves into women activists also fail to take up political offices when it comes for them to give their leadership. I do hope that some of them would pluck up the courage to lead their other womenfolk into political offices so that politics in this country also would have its fair share of women involvement.

With these few words, I want to congratulate our women and wish them well on this day.

Deputy Minister for Manpower, Youth and Employment (Mrs. Frema Akosuah Osei-Opare): Mr. Speaker, thank you very much for the opportunity to contribute to the Statement of the floor of the House. First of all, I wish to congratulate my hon. Colleague for her Statement and for doing a lot of research in coming out with very salient issues that affect women, particularly the issue of violence against women.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:05 a.m.
I hope
our technicians are listening to these?
Mrs. Osei-Opare 11:05 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I would like to draw attention to the fact that all of us, both men and women, should recognize that none of us is here without the contribution of a woman. We had the responsibility of nurturing all men and women and bringing them out into the world and most importantly nurturing them from infancy so that they will
Mrs. Osei-Opare 11:05 a.m.

survive. So when you hear the Nigerian song which says: “Sweet mother, I no go forget you, the way you suffered for me”.

I think this is the essence of celebrating womanhood; that all of us must recognize that women have played a very significant role in our survival and therefore the need to honour them, especially on a day like this.

Mr. Speaker, in talking about domestic violence I would like to draw attention also to our women folk, the need to treat our maidservants who are mostly women or young girls with dignity. It is important for us to set a good example, particularly those of us who have had the opportunity to advance both in terms of education and in terms of position. We must set a good example by the way we handle our maids in the House.

Often people are not looked after well in terms of even the meals, the kind of accommodation they are given them and even the integration of some of these young people who have been brought under our care into the whole family system. I believe that when we set an example we can show the rest of the world that women should be treated with dignity. The girl-child is the start up of womanhood and therefore whatever we do for them we do for those who are yet to grow.

Mr. Speaker, one of the things that have been worrying me is the rampant cases of rape of very, very young children. I think this is also the time to call attention that sometimes when people say that women dress in very provocative ways and that is why they are being raped -- I want to know what a six-month old child has done or what a schoolgirl of three years or six years should has done to deserve being raped. And who are raping the children? They are people around the households.

Often rape is committed by family members or people within the compound who have been entrusted with the responsibility of looking after them. Therefore, it is important for us to examine ourselves and to see that rape of children which is on the ascendancy in this country should be something that should be of concern particularly to all our parliamentarians in their messages to their communities.

I would like to call for support for units or departments or agencies which have been set up to champion the cause of women and children. I would like to call for support for the Ministry of Women and Children's Affairs (MOWAC), support for the Domestic Violence Law and Victim Support Unit (DVSU) and support for the Department of Social Welfare.

I have to be biased to call for extra support for the Department of Social Welfare because Social Welfare is charged with the responsibility of actually supporting these victims. They are at WAJU or the DVSU counselling children or women who have been traumatized. When you go to the Osu Remand Home you will see for yourself the number of girls who have been subjected to violence, who are now being taken care of.

Mr. Speaker, but our resources are limited. Therefore, we need more resources to help provide these needed services, not just for those in institutions but for social welfare at all district levels; they should have more staff to go round communities and educate them because prevention is better than cure.

So if we can send more ambassadors of social welfare into our communities then they will share with our families or our community members the issues around violence and things that we do that do not promote the well-being of the girl-child or the woman.

Mr. Speaker, on this note I would like to congratulate all women, all members of various communities, particularly women's groups for a good work done, for all the love and care they have shown to society and I wish all of us a very happy Women's Day.

Ms. Akua Sena Dansua (NDC --

North Dayi): Mr. Speaker, thank you for the opportunity to support the Statement on the floor.

Mr. Speaker, I would like first of all to begin by congratulating all Ghanaian women for their hard work over the years, for being there when we were fighting for independence and for carrying the nation on their shoulders up till today.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:05 a.m.
Hon. Members, you may please reduce the background noise so that the hon. Member can make her contribution.
Ms. Dansua 11:05 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, the attitude of most of our male Colleagues towards women's issues in this House is not the best. They see women's issues as being trivial and so it is like they are not interested in helping to solve problems that affect women.
Mr. Speaker, having said that let me also say that I am disappointed at the treatment of women, as far as the programme of activities of Ghana's 50th Independence Anniversary is concerned. A cursory look at the programme indicates that there is nothing specially planned for
Ms. Theresa Tagoe 11:05 a.m.
On a point of
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:05 a.m.
Hon. Member, please -- [Interruption.]
Ms. Dansua 11:15 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I want
to ignore her. What I am saying is that a cursory look at the programme of activities for the 50th Anniversary shows that there is nothing concrete. What she is talking about is to commemorate the International Women's Day today.
I believe it is being organized by the Ministry of Women and Children Affairs; and that has nothing to do with the 50th Anniversary Planning Committee. I am saying that the committee should have factored in today's celebration and come up with some elaborate programme to enable the women of Ghana also celebrate their achievements over the years; but they have not done that.

Assuming that women boycotted the Parade the other time what would we have had to show? We were there in our numbers to support the celebration; so we need to be given the recognition that we deserve. Without us, I do not think that there would be any team in this nation.

Mr. Speaker, the Women's Caucus recently paid a visit to Domestic Violence

Victims Support Unit (DOVVSU) -- we were more comfortable with Women and Juvenile Unit (WAJU) anyway and we realized that even though they are doing a lot to help women, children and even men who are victims of domestic violence, the unit is not being given the necessary financial support to enable it be very effective.

I am saying this, Mr. Speaker, because we were told that even though DOVVSU is trying to come out with a women's shelter for victims to spend maybe a few days before they are reconciled with their families, no resources have been made for them over the past five years to build on the foundation that has so far been laid, and we think this is not the best. DOVVSU is doing a lot and for them to be effective, they need to have the resources that will support their work to make them have the impact that we desire.

Mr. Speaker, I therefore want to use this opportunity to call on the Government to treat the demands or the concerns of DOVVSU as special. I am happy the two Ministers are here, the Minister for Finance and Economic Planning is here, he is not listening anyway and his Deputy is also here I hope they will take the DOVVSU project as a special one and provide them all the necessary support they need.

Mr. Speaker, I would like to end by saying that the Ministry itself is somehow guilty of perpetuating discrimination against women. I am saying this, because some hon. Members of this House, in fact, on both sides, applied last year for loans for their women and -- In fact, it was at the prompting of the Ministry itself that hon. Members applied for the loans - for the past six or seven months, some of us, have been chasing these loans.

You make calls, you visit and today it is

like the money is in this bank, go for it; and it is making some of us very unpopular in our constituencies. I do not think that the Ministry of Women and Children's Affairs should treat women in Ghana this way. If they know that the resources are not there, they should tell us. If they know that the resources are there then they should make it available to them on time. ¢1 million per woman to begin with, is nothing to write home about anyway, and for them to be spending time and energy chasing this little money is nothing good.

I also want to say that most of the time when the Ministry is embarking on foreign trips it fails to include hon. Members of this side on the delegations. There are vivid examples; only recently, I think last week or so, a national delegation went to New York to the meeting of the Commission on the Status of Women.

We were not aware; leadership of the Minority side was not aware which Member of our side was represented on that delegation, yet they called it a national delegation. I want to use this opportunity, Mr. Speaker, to urge the Ministry to correct some of these things because we have tried, behind the scenes, to dialogue but it looks like nothing is being done. So I think that the time has come for us to stop all these things. If we are preaching discrimination against women, it should not start from our own backyard.

With these words, Mr. Speaker, I thank you for the opportunity.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:15 a.m.
Finally, hon. Deputy Minister.
Deputy Greater Accra Regional
Minister (Ms. Theresa A. Tagoe) 11:15 a.m.
Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. -- [Interruptions.]
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:15 a.m.
Hon. Member, go on.
Ms. Tagoe 11:15 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, where have we women reached after so many years of fighting? There are only 25 women in Ghana's Parliament, out of 230. In Africa, there is only one woman President; why oh why? Why are children still dying? Why do children have no “pure” water to drink and contract guinea-worm? Why is the increase in child mortality? Why oh why, are women dying at child birth?
Mr. Speaker, let us get up and fight the fight for our female colleagues and children. Yes, there is domestic violence but is that all? Please, it is women's day. [Interruption.] Will you shut up -- [Laughter.] Will you keep quiet, please! “Keep quiet” is better than “shut up”.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:15 a.m.
Hon. Member, please go on with your contribution.
Ms. Tagoe 11:15 a.m.
Yes Sir.
Mr. Alban S. K. Bagbin 11:15 a.m.
On a point of Order. Mr. Speaker, the language of my Colleague, hon. Theresa Tagoe, is un-parliamentary and she should be made to withdraw and apologize. The fact that it is International Women's Day does not mean men should shut up. In fact, it is the men who will have to take up the wheel and create the necessary environment, the equality, the empowerment for the women. So if the men are to shut up then they will never get the power.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:15 a.m.
Hon. Minority Leader, I think that she meant that the men should listen. [Interruptions] -- Order! Obviously the men have spoken and I think the hon. Member should have appealed to the men to listen instead of using the words “shut up”. So if she can
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:15 a.m.

do something about it.
Ms. Tagoe 11:15 a.m.
Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, you see what we are complaining about - When women are doing things they the men want to disturb. That is so; why should they disturb us?
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:15 a.m.
Hon. Member, what the Minority Leader was complaining about was the words used and since you want to carry the men along, saying “shut up” is not the way to go about it, whether through the Speaker or --
Ms. Tagoe 11:15 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, you see, when a man -- [Interruption.]
Mr. Hackman Owusu-Agyemang 11:15 a.m.
On a point of Order. Mr. Speaker, I would like to assure my hon. Sister that our hon. Brother did not mean anything bad. But interestingly, when she said “shut up” it did not really refer to any honourable Member; she was addressing the Chair. So I think that it is even misplaced that the Minority Leader is complaining. It is you who must complain, Mr. Speaker, not the Minority Leader because she was addressing you as the tradition is in this House. I thought I should make that known. So it is you who must decide whether you feel offended or not -- [Interruptions.]
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:15 a.m.
Order! Order! That was where the hon. Member fell foul of the practice. Instead of directing it that way, she should have been addressing the Chair. So she should remove the words “shut up” and put it in a better way. We want to carry the men along; women's affairs are affairs of all.
Ms. Tagoe 11:15 a.m.
Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. But as the women have been saying any time the woman wants to do something the man wants to show
off. So he should not have told me to sit down. But since I am addressing you, I will quickly change it and say, please he should sit down quietly and let me talk.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:15 a.m.
Very well, so you have withdrawn the “shut up”?
Ms. Tagoe 11:15 a.m.
Yes, totally.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:15 a.m.
Very well, please go ahead.
Ms. Theresa Tagoe 11:25 a.m.
Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. Please, hon. Colleagues let us get up, fight the fight for our colleagues and children. Yes, there is a Domestic Violence -- [Interruptions.]
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:25 a.m.
Ms. Tagoe 11:25 a.m.
There is the Domestic Violence Bill which will be an Act very soon. But is that all? Mr. Speaker is that all? Please Mr. Speaker, let us wake up. Mothers of Jesus Christ and Muhammed should up wake and let us do why the Lord created us to do; that we should help men and we should look after our people -- [Interruption.]
Ms. Akua Dansua 11:25 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I am wondering if my hon. Colleague is reading a poem or reading another Statement.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:25 a.m.
You are out of order. -- [Laughter.]
Ms. Tagoe 11:25 a.m.
Thank you. Yes, so let us get up. And thank you, Mr. Speaker for helping me.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:25 a.m.
I was getting it concluded but I think that the hon. Deputy Foreign Minister may say a
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:25 a.m.

few words.

Hon. Deputy Minister, are you yielding to the hon. Member for Cape Coast?
Mr. Abraham Osei-Adjei 11:25 a.m.
Yes, but I was thinking that you would still give me the chance.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:25 a.m.
Yes, I would give you a chance. Just a couple of minutes, then she will come in.
Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs and NEPAD (Mr. Osei-Adjei): Mr. Speaker, I come from a constituency which prides itself with Nana Yaa Asantewaa. And for me Mr. Speaker, women have done a lot for Ghana and I believe that we should look at the positive side of this day that we are celebrating. There was a queenmother of the Gas called Dede Akai if I can remember correctly. She was a fantastic leader for the Ga people in about the eighteenth Century.
Mr. Speaker, I do not want us to believe that women in this country, honestly are behind. They should do better. By all means, they should do better, but I do not think that we have been able to tell our story so that people would know that women of this country have done tremendously well to help us in our advancement, economic-wise, political- wise and even social-wise.
Mr. Speaker, women are very courageous. The whole wide world, I know of Golda Meir of Israel; who was a tremendous courageous leader. I know of Bandaranaike of Ceylon who was also a very courageous leader. Then for Bangladesh -- So many countries, there are Mr. Speaker, that has women as their leaders. So that I think we should do is to encourage women. We should tell the story so that they know where they belong, so
that they can help in our advancement.
Mr. Speaker, we know very well, that women has done a lot in terms of social standing, political standing, and I believe that if efforts are being made they will do better. But, Mr. Speaker, as we say, it is not too late. But we should do something to encourage women to come to their rightful place.
Ms. Christine Churcher 11:25 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, International Women's Day is a day to pay glowing tribute to mothers, to wives, to sisters. Indeed, the role played by women in national development can be likened to the role played by the roots of a tree.
Mr. Adjei-Darko 11:25 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I
want the hon. Member to note that photosynthesis takes place within the leaves -- [Laughter] -- So it is not completely true that it is the roots which feed the tree.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:25 a.m.
Hon. Member, you are out of order.
Ms. Churcher 11:25 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, this is simple science that everybody understands -- [Interruption.]
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:25 a.m.
Please go on with your delivery.
Ms. Churcher 11:25 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I want
Ms. Churcher 11:25 a.m.

to explain to him so that he explains to his constituents, that is why I am taking time --
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:25 a.m.
Hon. Member, I have rule him out of order, so please use the time to give the original presentation.
Ms. Churcher 11:25 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, the roots of the tree are so important. The roots feed the whole tree. Mr. Speaker, the point I am making is that we know that other things happen for growth. But just as saying that even in the home it is the home itself which builds up a child, so are the rules.
Mr. Speaker, biblically it is not for nothing, according to the Bible, that after God had created everything and created the almighty Adam, God looked and said “something is missing; there is somebody who has to come to complement what I have done.” It was only when Eve had been created that the Lord God Almighty said, “Now, it is well; it is good” -- [Hear! Hear!] -- Therefore, Mr. Speaker, the important point that I am making today is that it takes a man and a woman to build. It takes women to complement. It takes women to nourish. It takes women to develop.
Mr. Speaker, even from the Islamic point of view, the great roles played by the wife of Prophet Muhammad, and the Prophet's own daughter Fatima, are such that we can say that every religion attests to the importance that women play in even forging religion forward.
Mr. Speaker, when it comes to Ashanti history, only yesterday, I was reading about the Yaa Asantewaa war. Mr. Speaker, even at a time when the Governor had put fear even in men, it took Yaa Asantewaa, a smallish woman to get up and say,
“enough of that; are we going to sit down and allow these people to make images of ourselves?” Mr. Speaker, we lost the Yaa Asantewaa war not because it was mooted and propelled by a woman but because the superior weapons used by the white man.
Mr. Speaker, I am saying that the argument that women are timid is neither here nor there. Women have never timid. Women are not afraid. Mr. Speaker, what is happening is that, as the hon. Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs, Regional Integration and NEPAD said, what women need is support and encouragement. Why do I say that?
Mr. Lee Ocran 11:25 a.m.
On a point of order. Mr. Speaker, I have a problem. Mr. Speaker, she says “when the women are on top,” but very rarely will they be on top.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:25 a.m.
Hon. Member, please, ignore it and go ahead.
Ms. Churcher 11:35 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I am saying that when you talk about International Women's Day, I also want to pay tribute even to the men who are sensitive to issues about women and children. Mr. Speaker, our own Dr. Kwegyir Aggrey made a statement which
has always been quoted but not quoted in the way it should; it has not been understood.
Mr. Speaker, what Dr. Aggrey meant simply was that in a home both the boy- child and the girl-child are important; but push the girl-child who is the mother for tomorrow, who is the sister, who is the wife. Mr. Speaker, when a woman is well versed, she knows what balanced diet is even for the husband.
When a woman is well educated, she knows what nutrition values is.

When a woman is well educated, she makes her choice not only for the husband but for children and the home itself is seated on somebody who understands the issues. Mr. Speaker, what Dr. Kwagyir Aggrey therefore meant was that once you educate a woman you have educated the husband in one way or the other because the woman is going to bring to bear her knowledge on issues at home and on her marriage. Once you educate a woman you educate the children; why because the woman who has the first touch with the child even from the womb is able to import that knowledge to the child.

What Dr Kwagyir Aggrey meant was that if you educate a woman -- the women who are in the market, when you educate them, the yield are is tremendous. When you educate one woman, you educate a nation in the sense that an educated woman would make sure her own children are educated; she would make sure that her husband himself is more educated.

Mr. Speaker, only yesterday, a friend of mine said to me, “Christie, do you
Ms. Churcher 11:35 a.m.

At home, how many men do not listen
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:35 a.m.
Ms. Churcher 11:35 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I am
Ms. C. A. Dapaah 11:35 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, on a point of order. There is a quotation that goes “I am the boss of this house and I have my wife's permission to say so” [Hear! Hear!]
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:35 a.m.
Member for Bantama, you have raised no point of order at all.
Ms. Churcher 11:35 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, the issue
is that there is no war between men and women, there is no contest between men and women, they are equal partners. The issue this morning is that women have done so much but have been ignored. The issue is to encourage women and tell them that they have done so much but must continue to work harder. When we talk about girl-child education, gone were the days, so many years ago, when even it was a taboo in certain areas to have girls in the classroom.
Mr. A. S. K. Bagbin 11:35 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, on
a point of Order. Mr. Speaker, I think that the hon. Member on the floor is misleading the House. Mr. Speaker, the natural thing is that women are expected to rule from behind, but it is because the women have not been permitted to do so that is why we are having the problems. That is why we are saying that we have to permit the women to be equal partners so that they can assist us to rule. They are not being permitted, the women are not being given the opportunity.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:35 a.m.
Order!, please go ahead.
Ms. Churcher 11:35 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, the hon. Minority Leader in saying that I am misleading the House is in fact supporting what I am saying. Mr. Speaker, he is saying that women have been ruling from behind and I am saying we the women we have power and not that we do not have the power.
I am saying that we have ideas, I am saying that nobody should prevent us from pushing ahead the ideas that we have. I am saying that why should queen mothers For instance, Mr. Speaker, in the home they would say that wait for the old woman to give the final say. One expects that queen
mothers would play a more prominent role even in the House of Chiefs than they doing now; and that is my personal opinion.
Mr. Speaker, this morning is a tribute
to good husbands is a tribute to husbands who know the value of their wives is a tribute to husbands who protect their maidservants and do not make wives of their maidservants who are young girls. It is a tribute to all the men who have been supporting women's issues,. It is a tribute to all women generally. It is tribute to churches. It is a tribute to Moslems.
It is a tribute to all of us who together know that it was only when Eve had been created that the Almighty God himself said “t is good.”
Mr. Speaker, thank you for the
opportunity. As for the hon. Bagbin, he supports what I am saying but he only wants me to know that in supporting me he does not want me to be too much at the background but wants me to come to the front. What we are saying, Mr. Speaker, is that we would come to the front but they should encourage us. Political parties for instance, should find a way of encouraging more women to stand for elections. Mr. Speaker, thank you very much; bravo to all women. Today is your day, but the men who are sympathetic to our cause bravo, may God help them to get more to support women.
Ms. T. A. Tagoe 11:35 a.m.
Ose yie, ose yie
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:35 a.m.
Order! Hon. Deputy Minister, order! Congratulations to the hardworking women of Ghana. At the Commencement of Public Business -- Presentation and First Reading of Bills.

PAPERS 11:35 a.m.


STAGE 11:35 a.m.

Mr. Adjei-Darko 11:45 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I beg to move, that
Clause 1, subclause (1), line 1, after “as” insert “public”
Mr. Speaker, the clause will then read as follows 11:45 a.m.
“The institutions specified in the Schedule to this Act are established as public polytechnics.”
Mr. Speaker, the purpose of this amendment is to bring indicate that we have in mind, or we have the intention of having different types of polytechnics -- public and private polytechnics - and we should therefore indicate the polytechnics which have been stated in the Schedule to be public ones. One may argue that page 4, clause (4), might have taken care of that. But clause (4) is talking about the level of a polytechnic as an institution.
What we have done in clause (1) is to list polytechnics and these polytechnics we have listed in the Schedule are public ones. At a later stage, there is the intention to introduce an amendment to allow for the establishment of private polytechnics also. So that is why I am moving that we must be specific about the type of polytechnics we have listed in Schedule 1.
Mr. Chireh 11:45 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I rise to
oppose the amendment because whether
Mr. Chireh 11:45 a.m.

we intend to have private polytechnics or not, when we are establishing them, there is a method for anybody establishing a polytechnic. But in our law, we are establishing our polytechnics as they are now and there is no reason why we should now add the word ‘public'.

The other argument is that even if

it is a private polytechnic that is being established, it is still important as we are saying, for the Minister by the LI to insert the name of that polytechnic - whether it is public or private. And it must have the same standards and develop the same criteria that we expect our polytechnics to have.

If we begin to say “private” and “public,” we are opening a very wide gap for people to set up private polytechnics that will not be technologically based, as I can see it. Because it is easier for people to establish private polytechnics that are doing the same normal things that even universities are doing. I therefore think that we should not add the word ‘public' to this subclause.
Mr. H. Iddrisu 11:45 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I rise
to oppose the proposed amendment. Mr. Speaker, indeed, what is public is determined largely by what is funded by the State through the Consolidated Fund. If you look at the Long Title, even though we are yet to come to it, the law is to establish polytechnics; we do not need to add “public”.
Indeed, with your indulgence, if you read clause 36 which requires the Minister to come out with an instrument making regulations for the establishment of those institutions that will allow for private participation in polytechnic education, it does not take away from the remit of this law; ours is that we are establishing
polytechnics to be solely funded by the State. They will be a State institutions and we do not need to qualify them with “public” or “private”:
So I will urge him -- Indeed, he himself has a further amendment that seeks some regulations to be made to take care of the private ones. I will rather recommend to him to withdraw this and then we will consider his other proposition which will come later on. I am sure that will be more useful.
Mr. Adjei-Darko 11:45 a.m.
Mr. Speaker,
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:45 a.m.
on. Chief Whip, do you want to contribute?
Mr. Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 11:45 a.m.
Mr. Speaker. I am not too clear about the intendment of the amendment being proposed by my colleague. Mr. Speaker, if one comes to consider clause (4), 4(1) says --
“A polytechnic established under this Act is a public tertiary institution.”
So I thought that that one was captured under 4(1).
Mr. Speaker, but if you come to consider clause 1(2) the Minister is empowered by Legislative Instrument to amend the Schedule, and if the Minister should amend the Schedule, what would it amount to? It will amount to adding to the list that we have in the Schedule. So I am a bit confused about the intendment of the amendment being moved by my Colleague. Perhaps, if he provides further elucidation, it may help all of us.
Mr. Adjei -Darko 11:45 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, we have not come to that stage, but hon.
Haruna Iddrisu was referring to further a amendment where I was proposing that subject to this Act, the Minister may by Legislative Instrument make Regulations for the establishment of private polytechnics. It is in line with this that I was trying to make it clear as to the polytechnics we have listed here, that they are the public ones. But if it is the wish of hon. Members that the other amendment I have proposed in section 36 will cater for this, then Mr. Speaker, I have no problem with it.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:45 a.m.
Are you withdrawing?
Mr. Adjei-Darko 11:45 a.m.
Exactly so.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:45 a.m.
Very well, the proposed amendment is withdrawn.
Mr. S. K. B. Manu 11:45 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I
beg to move --
Clause 1 -- add a new sub-clause as follows:
“(3) Each polytechnic shall be a corporate body with perpetual succession, a common seal and may sue or sued in its own name”
Mr. Speaker, this is true with all the institutions we have established under the law and this could not have been a different one, an odd one. This clause is found in all the other laws that we have made, so it is just to conform with the norm.
Mr. Ossei Aidooh 11:45 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I support the amendment except that if you look at the Bill's structure, it properly belongs to clause 3. It should be the first subclause of clause 3 which deals with
the corporate or the legal nature of the institution and not clause 1; otherwise, the amendment is all right. It should be the first sub-clause of clause 3.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:45 a.m.
Very well.
Mr. Haruna Iddrisu 11:45 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I believe that the amendment itself is in the right direction and I totally agree with the Deputy Majority Leader that when we come to look at acquisition of property, we can propose it under clause 3(1) as the first new subclause.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:45 a.m.
Chairman of Committee, it is a question of appropriate placement.
Mr. Manu 11:45 a.m.
I have no problem with the proposal.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:45 a.m.
Very well. So you will hold on with the amendment.
Question put and amendment agreed to.
Clause 1 as amended ordered to stand part of the Bill.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:55 a.m.
Clause 2 -- Affiliation to Universities.
Mr. Balado Manu 11:55 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I
beg to move that Mr. Speaker, given the nature of courses run by our polytechnic institutions, we may find some courses not being run in the universities so if we restrict it to universities it may be difficult finding an institution to be affiliated with them”. So we said, “relevant tertiary” institution, so that it could be a non- university but tertiary institution.
Mr. Adjei-Darko 11:55 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I
Mr. Adjei-Darko 11:55 a.m.

support the amendment. We do not want to eventually create polytechnics to run the same way the universities are running. We should not lose sight of what we intend polytechnics to do. Their degree should be technology based and therefore, if we tie them to the normal or the orthodox universities before we are aware, the polytechnics would become once again the same universities we are running. That is why the Committee is saying that we should look at relevant institutions.

And secondly, polytechnics, if you look at their course content and the programmes, a lot of these courses are more practical-oriented so that affiliating them to universities where theory might be of higher percentage than practical work, we would not be doing the right thing. That is why that affiliation should not be there.
Mr. Iddrisu 11:55 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I support the amendment. Indeed, even at the Second Reading of the Bill it was an issue which was dear to the hearts of our polytechnic students. If you look at Canada, South Africa and other countries, they have a well-developed polytechnic system. And even in Ghana, our own definition of tertiary encompasses universities and polytechnics so it would have been narrower if we said that it could only be affiliated to universities.
And more especially if you go further under clause 4, the polytechnics are guaranteed academic autonomy, and in pursuit of that they could be able to determine which institution they relate with. With that I support the amendment.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:55 a.m.
I believe you have something against it?
Mr. Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 11:55 a.m.
Not exactly, Mr. Speaker, but I am not too sure about the construction that “a polytechnic shall be affiliated to an existing accredited relevant tertiary institution.” Is it compulsory that all polytechnics shall be affiliated? I believe the word should be “may” and not “shall”.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:55 a.m.
Chairman of the Committee, do you follow the reasoning?
Mr. Manu 11:55 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, indeed, the polytechnics are to be affiliated to an institution for some period. It is not a matter of “may”.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:55 a.m.
Is it mandatory?
Mr. Manu 11:55 a.m.
Mr. Yieleh Chireh 11:55 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I
support the amendment proposed but I agree with the Majority Chief Whip. The word is “may” because of the autonomy we have already given to polytechnics. If you make it “shall”, it will be mandatory. One of the reasons why this amendment was proposed was also not to allow the polytechnics to be subsidiary to universities or be seen as colleges that we have established - university colleges that have been established -- and they must get degrees from other places. So it should be “may” be affiliated to any tertiary institution for purposes of relevance and it should not be “shall”.
I agree that the further amendment be accepted.
Mr. Abraham Ossei Aidooh 11:55 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, we all know where “shall” is used and “may” is used, but it appears this may be a matter of policy and I will advise that we defer this until the Minister is here.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:55 a.m.
because we have to find out under which law it is mandatory. I think that it is wise to defer it. In view of the suspension of the amendment, we will go to clause 3. Chairman, you can now move the amendment which you proposed under clause 1.
Clause 3 -- Acquisition of property
Mr. Manu 11:55 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I beg to move
that clause 3 is preceded by this new sub clause as sub clause 3(1).
Mr. Kyei-Mensa-Bonsu 11:55 a.m.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:55 a.m.
Do you have a problem? I thought it was accepted. It is just a question of placement.
Mr. Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 11:55 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, except to put it right. It is rather Clause 3 that commences -- He said that clause 3 should be preceded by what he was submitting.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 11:55 a.m.
it is just a question of language but essentially the meaning is understood.
Question put and amendment agreed
Clause 3 as amended ordered to stand
part of the Bill.
Hon. Members, I would like to hear your responses.
Clause 4 ordered to stand part of the
Clause 5 -- Objects of a polytechnic.
Mr. Iddrisu 11:55 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I beg to
move that we add an additional clause as part of the objects of a polytechnic. And it shall read:
Clause 5 -- add a new paragraph as follows:
“(c) encourage study in technical subjects at tertiary level”
Mr. Speaker, during the Second Reading, I remember that hon. Adjei- Darko made a very significant point and even today, he has repeated it. We need to distinguish between the mission and core objectives of the polytechnics from that of the universities. Indeed, the poly-technics were supposed to produce middle level manpower and in pursuit of that they run courses that are naturally practical.
So I think that it is important that we include this clause which was even originally part of PNDC Law 231 so that in character, the polytechnics can be distinguished from our universities. Their focus should be on technical subjects such as manufacturing, textiles and other industrial issues.
12. 05 p.m.
Mr. William Ofori Boafo 11:55 a.m.
Speaker, I stand to object to the proposed amendment. Mr. Speaker, a careful reading of clause 5(a) demonstrates this technical training for the polytechnic students. Mr. Speaker, there is even a general provision at the end of clause 5(a) which states: “. . . and any other field approved of by the Minister”. Mr. Speaker, I think the amendment being proposed is a superfluous. A careful reading of clause 5(a) says, and Mr. Speaker, with your permission I quote:
“The objects of a polytechnic are to provide
Mr. William Ofori Boafo 11:55 a.m.

(a) tertiary education in the fields of manufacturing, commerce, science, technology, applied social science, applied arts and any other field approved of by the Minister;”

Mr. Speaker, this leaves room for further development of the curricula of the polytechnics.
Mr. Adjei-Darko 11:55 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I
object to the amendment. If you talk about technical subjects, one has in mind a lower level of skill acquisition where there is very much emphasis on practical work. But when we are talking about tertiary education, then perhaps the appropriate term is what has been used in clause 5(a), “technology-based,” because we should also give room for research for advancement in technology. But if it becomes “technical subjects at tertiary level,”
I do not think we would be giving room for what we envisage a degree to be because a degree should have some component of, at least, some research work. So I do not think this amendment is necessary and I object to it.
Mr. S. K. B. Manu 11:55 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I
object to the amendment. Mr. Speaker, as has been explained earlier by hon. Members who have contributed, technical subjects are learnt at the lower levels in technical schools. Once they get into polytechnics, they are now going to focus attention on the technological aspect of what they have learnt at the lower level.
So at that level you cannot call them technical subjects but technology-based subjects. Indeed, he himself has said that what he means by technical subjects are commerce, manufacturing and all those which have been outlined in clause 1(a). So the amendment is not well founded and should be thrown out.
Mr. Chireh 11:55 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I think on
the whole this is a very good addition we are making to the law; it does not detract from the earlier things that have been mentioned in clause 5 (a) and (b). What is going to distinguish polytechnics from universities is that you may have somebody at the technical level teaching but he needs to be trained properly and the encouragement we are talking about in this study is for such people to go for certificate courses, diploma courses in polytechnics so that when they study in these polytechnics they go back to the technical institutions and have a better grounding.
This is not going to do any harm to the already enunciated objectives of the Polytechnics. I therefore urge this House and hon. Members to support the amendment and to support it wholeheartedly because it is from practice that this is being proposed. Those hon. Members who visited South Africa recently would have noticed that they have some courses, vacation training courses and such things. That is the encouragement that we want polytechnics to give to technical subjects.
Mr. Joe Gidisu 11:55 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I rise to
support the amendment in terms of the fact that we are trying to establish linkages with the technical schools and the polytechnics in a way and from the comments of the hon. Member who last spoke, there is the need, for example, for the polytechnics to even award certificates in the courses and programmes which are run in technical schools as a way of fostering closer input from the polytechnics to the technical institutions as it exist currently existing.
So Mr. Speaker, I think it would draw attention to the fact that there is that institutional linkage and for that matter it would be appropriate to accept the
amendment in terms of its relevance to the section.
Mr. Adjei-Darko 11:55 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, it looks
like two issues are being confused here. We are looking at, first, the polytechnic as a tertiary institution. Nothing stops the polytechnics as tertiary institutions from running other courses for people who want to upgrade themselves; and that is what clause 5(b) has provided for - provide opportunity for skills develop- ment, applied research and publication of research findings.
For skills development even master craftsmen go to the polytechnics to upgrade themselves, but if you say “technical subjects at tertiary level,” I am afraid that should not be the case. They are talking about people who are teaching at technical schools and may want to go for short programmes, and so on. The polytechnic as a tertiary institution is not debarred from running courses which are not tertiary programmes; they are not debarred from that.
Even now, if you look at polytechnics, although we are now trying to call them tertiary institutions they have been running as tertiary institutions. When you go there you would find the Ghana Accounting Technicians (GAT) -- Those courses are being run by polytechnics but they are not classified as tertiary courses; so classifying a technical course as “tertiary” is the problem. We are not stopping polytechnics from running any certificate course for technical people to upgrade themselves.
But let us not say degree programmes in technical education as it is stated because at that level, for a degree you would require certain things which you would not require if you were doing a technical subject at any level.
Mr. Haruna Iddrisu 11:55 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I
feel strongly about this amendment and I am sure I would encourage you to put the Question. But with your indulgence, if the polytechnics as we look at them today, acquire the needed faculty -- they now have Professors who can teach and decide they want to run courses in history and archeology -- would one stop them because we have already said that they can award degrees and other things? So I am saying that in character and in form, the polytechnics must be distinguishable from the universities.
We are saying, “encourage study in technical subjects;” we are not saying, “tertiary.” Indeed, even the courses we have mentioned, they do Diploma in Business Studies (DBS), they do other lower courses, and if we encourage them to do technical subjects they can move on from Higher National Diploma (HND) to develop those subjects at the degree level. That is the intention of this amendment and I think, Mr. Speaker, it is dignifying for you to put the Question and then we would see if we can vote. It would be honourable for me to lose.
Mr. Manu 12:15 p.m.
Mr. Speaker, I find this amendment very inappropriate. Mr. Speaker, as he is saying -- “encourage study in technical subjects at tertiary level.” The polytechnic is already a tertiary institution and as has been provided for in (b) which I do not think he has addressed his mind seriously to, it will provide opportunities for skills development.
So if the technical student or teacher wants to develop his skills he goes to the polytechnic; that is his intention and it has been catered for under (b). So I find this amendment to be out of place and it should not be entertained.
Mr. Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 12:15 p.m.
Speaker, in principle I agree with the position taken by my hon. Colleague, the Member for Tamale South except of course -- upon further scrutiny I thought that encourage-ment could only mean providing opportunities, which have been captured in (b). What I thought perhaps we could have added in (a) in the list of the subjects or courses offered by the technical institutions which rather we were silent on in (a) is “construction” and I thought that (a) should make space for “construction”.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 12:15 p.m.
Are you moving a new amendment? Because what you are saying is not on all fours with the amendment he is proposing? If you wish to move an amendment you may say so.
Mr. Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 12:15 p.m.
Yes. Mr.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 12:15 p.m.
Let us
finish with his amendment.
Mr. Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 12:15 p.m.
Speaker, what we have here, in my view -- encouraging study in technical subjects at tertiary level. It means we are moving upwards but already we are saying that the technical institutions themselves are tertiary institutions.
So if we say that we should encourage the study of technical subjects at tertiary level it looks like we are saying that the polytechnics are lower, and that of course would not sit with this current paradigm. So I believe that in that spirit my hon. Colleague would better advise himself and drop it and perhaps when we have finished with that we go upwards, that is (a) and amend that to take care of one
Mr. Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 12:15 p.m.

aspect of technical study that was left out in 5 (a). Mr. Speaker, I thank you for the opportunity.

Question put and amendment negatived.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 12:15 p.m.
Whip, before I put the Question on clause 5 let me get the amendment you were intending to propose.
Mr. Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 12:15 p.m.
Speaker, it was just to add the word “construction' in (a) so that for clause 5 (a) we shall have: “The objects of a polytechnic are to provide tertiary education in the fields of manufacturing, construction, commerce, science and technology;” and so on. So it was only to add the word “construction” after “manufacturing.”
Mr. Manu 12:15 p.m.
Mr. Speaker, I do not really think we need to put there “construction” because if we are to put “construction” then we shall have to bring in other areas like cookery and other things but at the end of it, it says “any other field approved by the Minister”. I think that caters for such areas as construction, cookery, masonry and those other areas.
Mr. J.Y. Chireh 12:15 p.m.
Mr. Speaker, I oppose
this amendment because if one talks about manufacturing, part of manufacturing includes construction; and construction is such a wide subject that one can even construct a building, one can construct a table and so many things. So we do not need it at all. We should just ignore it.
Question put and amendment negatived.
Clause 5 ordered to stand part of the
Clause 6 -- Powers of a polytechnic.
Mr. Manu 12:15 p.m.
Mr. Speaker, I beg to
move, clause 6 -- paragraph (a), line 2, delete “with” and substitute “provided that the programme is approved by the National Council for Tertiary Education and accredited by”
Mr. Speaker, so that the rendition
would be better captured.
Mr. Adjei-Darko 12:15 p.m.
Mr. Speaker,
I am a member of the Committee but unfortunately, upon reflection I think this amendment should be further amended. And I want it to be -- “Award Higher National Diplomas and other certificates agreed on by the Council and approved by the National Accreditation Board.”
Mr. Speaker, my position is that, in
fact, the National Council for Tertiary Education should not be given that mandate to approve programmes in institutions; the National Council for Tertiary Education is a co-coordinating body. But as it is now, it looks as if we are giving the power of approval to the National Council for Tertiary Education, which is misplaced. I do not think that is what happens in the universities. They need only the
Accreditation Board to accredit. They do not even approve; they accredit. And once they have accredited the programme, that the institution has the requisite facilities and personnel, and so on, to run it another body should not approve it; because once the approval status has been given to the National Council for Tertiary Education it means in actual fact that it is going to be the policy -- making body for education in the country. But the policy-making body is the Government which would at any particular time want education to be in a certain direction because of national needs.
So the approval by National Council for Tertiary Education is not necessary. It should simply be, “by the National Accreditation Board.”
Mr. Chireh 12:25 p.m.
Mr. Speaker, I think the further amendment that he is moving, if he also leaves it at that we will still have that “National Board for Technician and Professional Examination” there. That too should not come in because we will be giving duties to several bodies. But we know that it is the National Accreditation Board that must satisfy that none has the faculty, all the equipment and material on the subject areas to satisfy them. So we should leave it with the National Accreditation Board only and not add any other body.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 12:25 p.m.
I think
that this should be deferred. And you should confer with the hon. Minister for Education, Science and Sports and the various agencies to make sure that the full scope of the authority of the National Council for Tertiary Education and the National Accreditation Board is sorted out. So this will be stood down for the appropriate consultations to be made.
So we go to clause 6, paragraph (a)
-- Chairman of the Committee?
Mr. S. K. Manu 12:25 p.m.
Mr. Speaker, we have
stood the whole thing down.
It does not arise at all now.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 12:25 p.m.
think it can be taken in conjunction with the previous one so that we get a neater arrangement of the paragraph. So let us take paragraph (b).
Mr. Manu 12:25 p.m.
Mr. Speaker, I beg to
move, Clause 6 -- paragraph (b), line 1, delete
Mr. Manu 12:25 p.m.

“degrees” and substitute “technology- based approved degrees by the National Council for Tertiary Education and accredited by the National Accreditation Board”.

Mr. Speaker, we are moving this

amendment because we do not want the polytechnics to end up awarding degrees such as the universities. But we want them to award degrees that will be technology-based. So to distinguish the kind of degrees that will be awarded at the polytechnics from that which will be awarded by the universities, we are adding “technology-based.”
Mr. William Ofori Boafo 12:25 p.m.
Mr. Speaker, I stand to oppose the amendment. Mr. Speaker, as of now, we know that some of these polytechnics run courses like secretarial courses, business studies and others. And if we go strictly by the expression, “technology-based”, then it means we are going to rule out these courses. I do no think this is the intention behind the amendment. If that is the intention behind the amendment, than Mr. Speaker, I oppose it.
Mr. Adjei-Darko 12:25 p.m.
Mr. Speaker, I think
this also falls in line with the earlier one which we deferred. Because, I am still worried about this “approved degrees by the National Council Tertiary Education.” That is where the problem is.
So perhaps, we may have to treat this the same way we treated the earlier one because as I argued out, we do not have to given the power to the National Council for Tertiary Education to determine which polytechnic should run degree in engineering, which should run degree in business and which should run degree in pharmacy, and so on. That it not within the power of the National Council for Tertiary Education. So if we could treat this amendment the same way we treated the earlier amendment.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 12:25 p.m.
Hon. Majority Chief Whip, I think the presence of the hon. Minister for Education, Science and Sports would have helped this discussion. I do not see him. What do you advice?
Mr. Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 12:25 p.m.
Speaker, I am of the opinion that in view of the confusion that clause 6 is generating, we step it down; if we are to proceed we may also find problems with even clause 7. For which reason, Mr. Speaker, if we could stand this whole business down for further consultation and also allow the Minister responsible to be with us the next time we come to consider it.
Mr. Second Deputy Speaker 12:25 p.m.
It is important that we take decisions and do not come back to be told that because of some good reason we ought to handle this or that in a different way. So it will be advisable to defer further consideration of the Bill until we have all the stakeholders in the House for proper consideration of these amendments.
Meanwhile, if the Business Committee
could look at winnowing these things to make consideration smoother and speedier.
That being the case, what is the advice of the frontbench?
Mr. Ossei Aidooh 12:25 p.m.
Mr. Speaker, we
may have to adjourn at this stage and come back tomorrow at ten o'clock in forenoon.
I therefore beg to move for adjournment.
Mr. A. S. K. Bagbin 12:25 p.m.
Mr. Speaker, I
beg to second t he motion.
Question put and motion agreed to.
ADJOURNMENT 12:25 p.m.