Debates of 20 May 2008

PRAYERS 10 a.m.


Mr. Speaker 10 a.m.
Hon. Members, I am happy to note that you have resumed duty in the House looking hail and hearty. I thank the Almighty God for answered prayer for guiding us through our endeavours during the recess and bringing us back to the House safely.
Hon. Members, gradually, we are
collectively advancing towards the finality of our tenure of duty in this House for the Fourth Parliament of the Fourth Republic. Let us, as usual be tolerant of the divergent views expressed by the shades of the caucuses within the House and forge ahead with consensus building in all our deliberations.
Le t us a l l be mindfu l o f the accomplishments of our compatriots who
laid the foundation for a united Ghana and let our actions strengthen the foundation for a better tomorrow for generations to come.
I hope hon. Members will not give me the cause to complain about lateness and absenteeism to the Sittings of the House during this short Meeting.
With these few words, I wish to
welcome hon. Members to the House and wish them an enjoyable and fruitful Meeting.
votes and Proceedings and the Official Report.
Mr. Speaker 10 a.m.
Order! Order! Correction of Votes and Proceedings for Wednesday, 19th March, 2008. Page 1, 2, 3, . . . 44. [No correction was made.]
Hon. Members, we have Official
Reports for Tuesday, 26 th February, 2008; Wednesday, 27th February, 2008; Thursday, 28th February, 2008, Friday, 29th February, 2008; Tuesday, 4th March 2008; Friday, 7th March 2008; Tuesday, 11th March 2008; Wednesday, 12th March 2008; Thursday, 13th March 2008; Friday,

Minority Leader (Mr. A. S. K. Bagbin) 10:10 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I hesitated because I thought you would allow some more hon. Members from the Committee on Foreign Affairs to say a few words in solidarity with our brothers and sisters of the global world in China.
Mr. Speaker, you led a delegation
of this august House to China as part of parliamentary diplomacy to try to widen and strengthen the already cordial relationship between Ghana and China. Mr. Speaker, I was privileged to be part of the delegation and we actually visited the area which unfortunately, had been hit by this earthquake. We were in Sichuan Province together; we visited the rare species called the pandas. And this morning I was looking at the picture I took there with the pandas.
Mr. Speaker, it is really sad, tragic and sorrowful that the tragedy befell China at this time when China is seen as a rising star in global politics.
Mr. Speaker, the horrific pictures we saw on television, the horrendous deaths and the extent of devastation are such that we would need a global effort to be able to get China to stand on its feet. The death toll is usually projected to be around fifty thousand. Mr. Speaker, it is very likely it could exceed the fifty thousand because of the aftershocks. The aftershocks themselves measure so high, and sometimes as high as 5.7, and when that happens in Ghana it will be something that we cannot stand up to.
Mr. Speaker, all we can say is that our hearts are with them in China. We will do the little that we can to try to support the
Majority Leader/Minister for Parliamentary Affairs (Mr. A. O. Aidooh) 10:10 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I just want to briefly link myself with this Statement.
I have also been to China on two
occasions. In fact, I have been to this Province, in 2002 and then during this recent visit.
Mr. Speaker, it is sad that such a tragedy should befall people who are so nice and friendly. During our visits they gave us all the courtesies that we would have wished for ourselves. Mr. Speaker, I am aware that you have taken the initiative of writing officially to express our condolence to the people of China. Mr. Speaker, for us Ghanaians, I think that we must draw some lessons from this experience that the Chinese are going through.
Mr. Speaker, the first thing that strikes anybody is the question that why is it that the old building that were put up in China in the Province held against the earthquake but the new buildings have collapsed. One is saddened by the fact that in some
Mr. Freddy Blay (CPP -- Ellembelle) 10:10 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I also rise with all humility to associate myself with the Statement that has been made by the hon. Chairman

of SINO/Ghana Friendship Association and indeed, the statements or comments that have been made by both the Minority Leader and the hon. Majority Leader.

Mr. Speaker, indeed you also afforded me the opportunity alongside my other hon. Colleagues, moreso the two Leaders of this House to be in China with you on that historical visit. The picture of what we saw in China, Mr. Speaker, is still vivid in my memory, moreso, this province that we visited.

Mr. Speaker, I have just read and heard it on the radio, the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) and elsewhere that, that product of human ingenuity -- I am talking about the dam that had been built for about two to three hundred years -- is almost at a risk of being overrun by water and it is their rainy season as well. Mr. Speaker, when one talks about that kind of tragedy and what is happening, there is some pain in one's heart.

I would also associate myself with what the hon. Majority Leader had said, that the society -- I am talking about the Chinese society itself, is it prepared for such calamity? Indeed, the hon. Member who made the Statement has pointed out that, that region is prone to earthquakes, cyclones and other very serious disasters.

But the most significant thing that we all appreciate is that at any time that it happens they cannot control it because this is a natural disaster, they have the their spirit of tackling it, of rebuilding their society, of ensuring that things are put right. I saw it yesterday. When they said that there should be a three-minute silence in the country, everybody was silent but they were shouting that they will build their country again. Mr. Speaker, I was rather very impressed and touched at their determination to turn that tragedy into something that brings them together.

I agree with him that we should all be prepared, that disaster could happen because we cannot control it but the essence is what you can do to ensure that we minimize the effects of such big disasters.

Mr. Speaker, I am told that that place has 80 million people and as we talk, over 10 million people are homeless. The hon. Minority Leader was talking about 50 to 100 people maybe losing their lives but even one thousand people losing their lives and even if you talk about 10 million people being rendered homeless, if it happens in any part of Africa, it will be a terrible disaster.

The Chinese people whom we are expressing solidarity with are working hard and they are turning this into an advantage which we could build on. We need to learn from them. More importantly Mr. Speaker, we all join you in the House and indeed, this country to express our solidarity, to express our sadness and to tell them that we stand with them at the time of their difficulty particularly around this time.

Chinese have been our friends; they have expressed solidarity and done a lot things to help and indeed, they are even helping this Parliament. We are happy they have done so but we are sad about what is happening to them. Indeed, we pray to the Almighty God that they should be more encouraged, they should stand firm and make sure that the homeless people will have houses and we have the confidence that they will do it in a record time.

Mr. Speaker, as I said, I also join the Leadership in thanking the hon. Member who made this Statement and your goodself for giving me the opportunity to contribute to it.

Mr. Hackman Owusu-Agyemang

(NPP -- New Juaben North): Mr. Speaker, I thank you very much and

welcome all my hon. Friends to the House. I want to associate myself with this Statement.

A lot has been said about China but there are other places and I share those sentiments because they are our friends. But with all these Mr. Speaker, we should not forget that in Burma, in Myanmar, they have also had difficulties there and we are also expressing solidarity with the people, not necessarily with the Government, it is a people to people contact. So I think that in this Statement we should also express our sentiments, our condolences, our support and our solidarity with the people of Burma.

I thought I should make that point lest it be said that we are being discriminatory. So I want to put on record that the people of Ghana also share the agony and the tragedy and our sympathies with the people of Burma.

Thank you, Sir.
Mr. Abraham Ossei Aidooh 10:10 a.m.
Speaker, I beg to move that we adjourn at this stage and convene tomorrow morning at 10 o'clock.
Mr. A .S. K. Bagbin 10:10 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I beg to second the motion.
Question put and motion agreed to
ADJOURNMENT 10:10 a.m.

Alhaji Mohammed M. Mubarak 10:40 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, in the hon. Minister's Answer he said there is a general demand-supply deficit in the water supply to the above- mentioned area. Mr. Speaker, may I ask the hon. Minister what caused this demand and supply deficit.
Alhaji Boniface 10:40 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, the answer to my hon. Colleague's question is that first of all, there are many factors accounting for the demand-supply deficit. Currently, we are carrying out the East- West interconnection and therefore most of the pipelines are broken down. And in order to supply all these areas, you cannot have a straight flow and therefore rationing has to take place.
We also have expansion and popu- lation explosion and what we currently supply will not be enough to meet the demand. Therefore, we must take a critical look at it and then ration to the satisfaction of all. This is because one cannot supply one area at the expense of the other; we do not have to trade off. And therefore there is the need to make sure that we do some rationing which has been done proportionally for people to benefit.
Alhaji Mubarak 10:40 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, the question I would want to ask of the hon. Minister is what plan has been implemented for the past five, seven years that has taken into consideration the expansion in the population and also the project work that he talked of, when we know critically the number of people and the amount of water that they require.
Alhaji Boniface 10:40 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, this was inherited. Population growth is about 2.6 per cent and the point is that the supply of water is just one per cent. So there is a very wide gap of about 1.6 per cent. And in order to meet this in the supply of

water, one needs to forecast by making a provision of about ten, twenty, thirty years ahead. Right now, what is being supplied from Weija is about 15 million gallons per day. But we are planning to bring something that will supply 186 billion gallons a day. So even if the population growth goes beyond 2.6 per cent we can still meet the demand.

So Mr. Speaker, what the Government is doing is not intentional but it is rather salvaging the problem.
Mr. David T. Assumeng 10:40 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, talking about rationing, I want to know how effectively it is being done because areas like Labone, Apapa and even Dodowa are not getting adequate water. So how effective is the water rationing?
Alhaji Boniface 10:40 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, my hon. Colleague answered the question when he said they are not getting adequate water. It is based on the rationing so he does not expect me to give him water everyday. But at least, if within the week he gets water for two days it is enough for other areas to also get. I personally do go round to check areas where the water is not flowing and I interact with the people. I have personal intercourse with them -- [Interruptions.]
Mr. Speaker 10:40 a.m.
Hon. Minister, you should not be disrupted.
Mr. Mahama Ayariga 10:40 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, from the response of the hon. Minister, he seems to be indicating that the main cause of the water shortage in Nima, Mamobi and Kwaotsuru is the general shortage of water supply to the Accra Metropolis. I believe the hon. Minister knows Nina very well by virtue of the several intercourses that he has been having with members of the Nima community.
But is it not also the case that internally, within the Nima/Mamobi and New Town communities the water connections are so
inadequately done that even if he rations water in Accra, that community will not end up being able to access the quantum of water that he will be rationing for them? So what is the hon. Minister doing about the internal connections and supply of water in the Nima/Mamobi and New Town communities apart from the issue of rationing of water for the entire Accra Metropolis?
Alhaji Boniface 10:40 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I agree with my hon. Colleague perfectly. We are all Nima boys. We do converge there. And he knows that that is why in my Answer I said we are working on it. Also, there are illegal connections and so they often misdirect the flow of water to the right place. And we are taking measures on that.
Mr. Speaker 10:40 a.m.
Question number 1117 hon. Evans Paul Aidoo -- Member of Parliament for Sefwi-Wiawso?
Sefwi-Aboduam and Sefwi-Wiawso Constituency
(Small Town Water System)
Q. 1117. Mr. Evans Paul Aidoo asked the Minister for Water Resources, Works and Housing when Sefwi-Aboduam in the Sefwi-Wiawso constituency will be provided with the small town water system.
Alhaji Boniface 10:40 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, the current population of Sefwi Aboduam is estimated to be 2114 and this qualifies the town for a small town water supply system according to CWSA guidelines. Sefwi Aboduam now has four (4) boreholes fitted with hand pumps as sources of water supply for the town. Sefwi-Aboduam would be considered for the IDA and EU small town piped borne water supply system in 2009.
Mr. Aidoo 10:40 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, Sefwi- Aboduam is just about a kilometre away from my village. Is the hon. Minister not
Alhaji Boniface 10:40 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I am not aware. I will be there to justify.
Mr. Aidoo 10:40 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, since the hon. Minister is not aware, will the Community Water and Sanitation Agency consider providing additional boreholes for the community until the programme starts in 2009?
Alhaji Boniface 10:40 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I take notice of it and I will summon Community Water and Sanitation Agency for us to check.
Mr. Speaker 10:40 a.m.
Hon. Minister for Water Resources, Works and Housing thank you very much for appearing to answer these Questions.
Item 4 -- Statements -- Statement by hon. Member for Atwima-Mponua and Chairman of the Committee on Sports, Youth and Culture.
STATEMENTS 10:50 a.m.

Chairman, Committee on Sports, Youth and Culture (Mr. Isaac K. Asiamah) 10:50 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, the time is here and now. Ghana, our beloved and blessed country is the host of this memorable 26th MTN Africa Cup of Nations. The impressive performance of the Black Stars against their Guinean counterpart in the opening match is a good beginning for the nation. Indeed, Mr. Speaker, the victory of the Black Stars last Sunday has electrified the entire country and unified the nation. The wild jubilation that greeted the vintage

Black Stars' victory across the length and breadth of the country underscores the fact that soccer is the passion of the nation. However, a note of caution to football loving fans is necessary. Soccer fans should be more responsible in their jubilations -- alcoholism, careless driving, indecent sexual behaviour, et cetera should be watched.

Mr. Speaker, I wish at this juncture to congratulate Ghana, the host nation for her extensive preparation towards successful hosting of the tournament and the 15 other qualified nations are being congratulated for clinically going through the mill. They are therefore welcomed to the land of Gold and to the land of hospitality.

Mr. Speaker, Africa Football has indeed come of age, key ambassadors of football have emerged from the continent. Their conjuring skills in the field of play have been exhibited through out the World most especially in Europe. These ambassadors are shining icons in the world. Mention can be made of Didier Drogba of la Cote D'Ivoire; Michael Essien and Stephen Appiah of Ghana, Nwankwo Kanu and Obafemi Martins of Nigeria.

The absence of some of the continent's key football ambassadors is a threat to the survival of some clubs in Europe. This tournament is therefore an opportunity for the Continent to showcase the abundant football talents at its disposal, and to signal to the world that we can compete healthily and catch the attention of the World.

Mr. Speaker, the Black Stars of Ghana, hold the hearts of about twenty million Ghanaians. Like eggs in their hands, they should handle us with care. Discipline is key on the field of play for the Stars to progress in this tournament. The unnecessary attraction of referees' cautions, and yellow cards should be
Mr. Pele Abuga (NDC -- Paga/ Chiana) 10:50 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I want to congratulate the maker of the Statement for hastening to congratulate the Black Stars and all those involved in this big competition. Mr. Speaker, I also take the opportunity to congratulate our Black Stars and to urge them to put in more effort. While I say this, I would like to caution that the road is going to be very tough, but as usual with determination and perseverance I know the Black Stars will make it.
Mr. Speaker, I would also like to point out that in the general organization of the competition, there were very soar areas that are of much concern to many Ghanaians. I will particularly like to point out the way tickets are being distributed. In the first match that we witnessed at the Ohene Djan Stadium, we saw empty chairs while people were still clamouring before the match for tickets. Mr. Speaker, this is very, very bad that we can have empty chairs at the stadium while people are still looking for tickets outside to enter the stadium. The Local Organizing
Committee (LOC) and the Ministry will have to be up and doing and to see how they can correct some of these problems in the ticket distribution.
Mr. Speaker, we also had occasion to hear that the accreditation to the pressmen and others was not the best. Mr. Speaker, I hope that with time, all this will be corrected.
Mr. Speaker, the Black Stars coach and other coachers have complained about the quality of the pitch. While the stadium is one of the best that we can witness on the African continent, the pitch itself where the footballing takes place is something that everybody is lamenting about. It is very unfortunate that with such a very beautiful shining stadium you go into the pitch to kick the ball and you find that when you kick the ball it goes in different directions.
All the clubs, even the Ghanaian team have complained about the quality of the pitch. It is an unfortunate development. I am surprised they did not take the trouble to ensure that the pitch itself where the game was going to take place is of the best quality.
Mr. Speaker, to worsen matters and I hope it will not occur again, yesterday when some of the teams were playing at the sports stadium suddenly we had the usual Ghanaian blackouts and for twenty minutes everybody was confused, they did not know what was taking place. I hope this incident will not repeat itself. I know it has occurred in other countries, it is not the first time but this could have been avoided. I hope that the authorities are taking every trouble to ensure that we do not experience black outs in the rest of the competition.
Mr. Pele Abuga (NDC -- Paga/ Chiana) 10:50 a.m.

Mr. Speaker, there were other problems that they encountered but I hope these are normal problems like some of the teams rejecting the training pitches. Mr. Speaker, we had the occasion to point out that it is not just the matter of putting up quality stadia, we should also ensure that teams have training pitches on which to train before they play their matches.

Mr. Speaker, to have the clubs or countries rejecting some of the training pitches was also a very bad part of the organization. But all said and done, I think that it is a very interesting competition and we all pray for the Black Stars and we hope that they will put in maximum effort to ensure that the cup comes to this country. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.
Mr. Emmanuel A. Gyamfi (NPP -- Odotobri) 11 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I wish to associate myself with the Statement made by my hon. Friend for Atwima-Mponua. Mr. Speaker, indeed the future is bright for Ghana. Looking at the preparation so far made towards the hosting of CAN 2008, the infrastructure that we have provided so far gives the necessary indication that we in Ghana are heading somewhere.
For the two newly refurbished stadia and the two newly constructed ones at Tamale and Sekondi-Takoradi gives the hope that our national team the Black Stars are in for the trophy for the fifth time, which we are all envisaging in the country.
Mr. Speaker, one thing that I would like to point out here is that we should support the Black Stars.
Mr. Speaker, the last Sunday's match, the opener, between the Black Stars and their Guinean counterparts, when we had the penalty goal then the Guineans equalized we saw that the support base of Ghanaians, the fans, was just dying away but that was the time the team needed our support. Mr. Speaker, some of us even switched off our television sets. Some
others who were listening to their radios -- [Interruption] -- Mr. Speaker, the unflinching support that we needed to give to the Black Stars was just dying away.
Though I am not a fan of Accra Hearts of Oak, I learnt the saying that “never say die until the bones are rotten”. We have 90 minutes of action and if the 90 minutes is not exhausted, then we should not give up. We should continue to support the Black Stars and I thank God that we were able to win this particular opening game.
I do not know what would have happened at the subsequent matches that we are going to play if we did not win. So I will urge all Ghanaians to support the Black Stars in any way, no matter what is happening so that we will just encourage them to do what we are expecting them to do for us.

Mr. Speaker, there is another issue, the blackout that we had yesterday. It looks as if this incident is making the good things that have been done as a nation to go to the background. It is quite unfair. We should be encouraged by the preparations so far that we have made for this particular tournament. Though it is quite unfortunate, these things sometimes do happen. So we should encourage ourselves with the preparations that have been done towards hosting this particular tournament. The comments that we are hearing are very unfortunate. It is as if we have not done anything at all to host this particular tournament.

Again, I will use this opportunity to

appeal to the authorities to start thinking and making preparations towards naming the two newly constructed stadia -- the one at Tamale and the one at Essipon in Sekondi/Takoradi. We know we have the
Mr. Abdul 11 a.m.

Wa Central): Thank you, Mr. Speaker, for the opportunity to contribute to this all important Statement. At this very juncture, any word said for the Black Stars in support of them is crucial for their morale and it is important that we do so in this Parliament to let them know how seriously we are taking this tournament and to also let them know that we are fully and solidly behind them.

Team play promotes development

and it promotes unity. And for the Black Stars what they demonstrated in their first match is a commendable approach to team playing and that is what we want to encourage them to continue to do. We are all elated, and we are all happy with the success they brought us in their match against Guinea. We want to encourage them, as the maker of the Statement has said, to continue to work hard so that they can move from victory to victory as they encounter even tougher teams.

But this tournament is bringing to us a kind of tourist value which we need to reap as a nation. The football tournament we are enjoying is just not only the fiesta about it, it is also the fact that we are bringing together huge numbers of people from varied and different types of countries who are coming to see Ghana. This is the time for us to showcase Ghana. Apart from showcasing the talents the boys have, we also showcase what we have made of ourselves 50 years after


It is important also to use this

opportunity to caution our young people who are enjoying the fiesta to do so with moderation. At the moment, we have sad news of situations where young girls are deceived into prostitution in the sex trade. This is an opportunity also to caution the people who are in it and leading it to stop it and ensure that we do not expose our young people to this kind of situation as we all enjoy the fiesta in Ghana.

Mr. Speaker, there is also the question

of complacency on the part of our boys in their encounter with various teams. This is also another opportunity we want to use to let them know that as we enjoy the soccer they play, they have to ensure that they do not run into situations where they value teams below their expectations.

What I mean is that they should ensure that they do not underrate any team. I am just venturing into advising them to commit themselves so much to what they are doing and to know also that every Ghanaian is watching them and that no team is small. As they go into the field, Parliament is telling them to work as hard as they can to ensure that they bring victory home. That is the only thing we want from them at this very moment.

Lastly, I wish to urge them to commit themselves to the national cause. This is a responsibility they have to demonstrate to the highest and this is a responsibility that if they are able to carry out to the fullest, would make us happy throughout our Golden Jubilee celebration until we enter the next season of celebration.

This is also an election year and

football as we see now, is brining us all together. We want to encourage them to do as much as they can to let us go through
Mr. Abdul 11 a.m.

to the finals. So that as they play we also are going to demonstrate we have a united approach to supporting Ghana and forget about our partisan divisions and win this Cup for Ghana.
Mr. Benito Owusu 11 a.m.

Atwima/Nwabiagya): Mr. Speaker, I would like first of all to congratulate the maker of the Statement for a good job done.

I would also like to congratulate the Black Stars because I think it is necessary and important that we congratulate them for the win on Sunday. At the same time we also have to congratulate the Government for the magnificent edifices and facilities that it has made available for this tournament.

In congratulating the Government, we should also not forget other service providers like those in the accommodation sector, those also in the transportation sector and all other sectors that have all gone a long way to help in having a successful tournament so far.

Mr. Speaker, the games have helped

in opening up the country. For instance, the various regional capitals which are currently host cities for the tournament have been opening up in terms of hotel facilities and other facilities that are currently under use.

I would urge the Ministry of Tourism and Diasporan Relations to take a cue from what is happening now. Now, I would say that Ghana has been opened up, Tamale has been opened up, Kumasi is opened up, Sekondi/Takoradi has been opened up and all these places can also host various important conventions and conferences. So henceforth, I think we should also help them by decentralizing these events to these host cities.

Kumasi for instance, has been witness

to so many hotels that have sprung up. After these games, what are they going to do if we do not help them by holding events in these places? Likewise Tamale and Sekondi/Takoradi.

On this note, I would end and thank the

maker of the Statement.
Mr. E . T. Mensah (NDC -- Prampram) 11:10 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I rise to associate myself with the Statement on the floor. But before that, let me welcome back to the House our flagbearers. They are hereby welcomed back home. I believe hon. Osafo-Maafo is listening to me. Hon. Papa Owusu-Ankomah and the rest of them are welcome. And the great leader -- [Interruption.]
Mr. Speaker 11:10 a.m.
Order! Hon. Members,
let us have decorum.
Mr. E. T. Mensah 11:10 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, even
though the Statement is quite early, the intention is quite clear for the organizers and those in charge to wake up and address all the pitfalls and the concerns. Concerns have been raised about problems with ticketing. The rumour is that some companies purchased the tickets to do business with them, even in both stadia. I went to Takoradi yesterday and there were our local people outside who wanted to enter the stadium but could not have access to tickets. The stadium was filled by mostly Nigerians and la Cote d'Ivoire supporters and when Nigeria lost for the second match the stadium was virtually half full.
What we want to suggest they do is to go back to what we did in 1999 and 2000. We got the Accountant-General's Department and the Ghana Commercial Bank to take charge of the tickets. So
Minister of State (Mr. Osei Kyei- Mensah-Bonsu) 11:10 a.m.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker, for the opportunity to associate myself with the Statement.
Mr. Speaker, I think we must at this juncture commend the Government and the people of Ghana for bringing to this country this all important tournament. One cannot fail to appreciate the sense of patriotism that this tournament has ignited in the good people of Ghana. If one goes everywhere one sees Ghanaians waving the flag of Ghana and wearing the various paraphernalia associated with the Black Stars. A few people also have associated with some other countries which are participating in this tournament. Clearly, Mr. Speaker, this ought to continue.
This patriotism that this tournament has engendered in Ghanaians ought to continue. We are one people with a common destiny, one nation. In unity, we can achieve a lot. Yes, we are diverse in our politics but unity in diversity ought to be appreciated by everybody.
Mr. Speaker, whilst we are at this, the hon. Ranking Member alluded to certain shortcomings and I believe our focus
Mr. E.T. Mensah 11:10 a.m.
On a point of order.
Mr. Speaker, it is not a point of order against him but a point of order against some of the former flagbearers. They are disturbing.
Mr. Speaker 11:10 a.m.
Deputy Whip, you have
no point of order, let him continue.
Mr. Speaker 11:10 a.m.
Hon. Members, order.
Mr. Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 11:10 a.m.
So, Mr.
Speaker, as we have said, yesterday at the Accra Sports Stadium, less than a 20th of the spectators who witnessed the opening match between Ghana and Guinea witnessed yesterday's match at the Accra Sports Stadium and that was most unfortunate.
Some former players of the national
team have also complained about neglect. It is important that we look at them because their resilience, their own contributions, during their time has contributed to making Ghana what it is today in respect of the image that we have as a footballing
Mr. Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 11:20 a.m.


Mr. Speaker, we also need to look at the

pitch. Hon. E.T. Mensah has mentioned, hon. Pele Abuga mentioned it. I think that the technical people have told us that when we grew the grass we ought to have allowed some time, cut it very low, allow the grass to grow and then do the mowing thereafter. Unfortunately, we did not have much time at our disposal but that is what we would have to deal with and let us make the best out of it. Subsequently, we have to look at it.

An hon. Member has raised this

issue about the naming of the two other stadia that we have built at Tamale and Essipon. It is important that we do great consultation in this regard because I do know that when names were given to the Accra Sports Stadium, now Ohene Djan Stadium and Baba Yara in Kumasi, there were some noises which were made. So it is important that we begin the consultations and if we have to put some names onto these stadia, there would not be any controversy.

Mr. Speaker, what we witnessed the day before yesterday, on Sunday, was a useful beginning. It was an endeavour in perseverance and endurance.

Yesterday, on my way from Kumasi, a local sports journalist on Oman FM, gave a description of what we went through, and he said that this was, to quote him, “Ayem hyehyeo nkunimdi”. Mr. Speaker, that was not what we wanted to go through. Yes, it was victory all right but it came whilst we were sitting on tenterhooks -- [Interruption]-- The translation is what I have offered -- “Victory on tenterhook”.

He said “ayem hyehyeo nkunimdi”. We would not want to go through such

circumstances again. Mr. Speaker, so it is important to urge the players, the technical team and the board room support team to put their act together and soldier on. The nation expects much from them but at the end of the day, let the best team win. Mr. Speaker, thank you for the opportunity.

Deputy Minister for Education,

Science and Sports (Mrs. Angelina Baiden-Amissah): Mr. Speaker, the Ministry of Education, Science and Sports expresses its gratitude to hon. Members of Parliament and Ghanaians in general for showing so much interest, and also showing a sense of patriotism and nationalism in the tournament.

Mr. Speaker, we are also happy that there is so much commendation for the Black Stars and their performance, and also for the other national teams that are playing in the country.

Mr. Speaker, we have taken care of concerns raised on ticketing, maintenance of the fields and other setbacks that reared their heads during the opening of the tournament. The Ministry would inform the National Sports Council (NSC) the Local Organizing Committee (LOC) and Ghana Football Association (GFA) to take care of all these so that such occurrences would not happen again in the subsequent ones.

Mr. Speaker, concerning the naming

of the Sports Stadia, the two have already been named, for the Sekondi Sports Stadium, it is going to be named after Edward Acquah, a footballer that we all know of. I am even happy that this has been raised because the area where the stadium is situated is Inchaban, not Essipong; Essipong is the place where the contractors are residing.

If anything, the name should be “Sekondi Sports Stadium” which we

all know and which we all approved in Parliament. So if it is named after a footballer, all of us would like it. As at now Inchaban's name does not even come in at all. If it is “Edward Acquah Sports Stadium, Sekondi”, there will be no noise because my Chiefs are agitating so much as regards the naming after Essipong.

Mr. Speaker, as I say this I thank every hon. Member here, I also urge all of us to keep on encouraging them to play and also win. Let us all hope that they are going to win, and win massively.
Papa Owusu-Ankomah 11:20 a.m.
On a point
of order. Mr. Speaker, just a point of correction. The stadium is now known as “Sekondi Sports Stadium”, it is not “Essipong Sports Stadium”. I just wanted to correct my hon. Colleague. It is Sekondi Sports Stadium, not Essipong Sports Stadium.
Mrs. Baiden-Amissah 11:20 a.m.
Mr. Speaker,
I am very happy that the hon. Member of Parliament for Sekondi has come out with the correction that it is not Essipong Sports Stadium. But pressmen keep saying Essipong Sports Stadium. Even the hon. Minister for Information and National Orientation mentioned Essipong Sports Stadium on the day that we were having -- the People's Assembly.
Mr. Speaker 11:20 a.m.
Deputy Minister, are
you concluding?
Mrs. Baiden-Amissah 11:20 a.m.
Mr. Speaker,
so the name is “Sekondi Sports Stadium”, not “Essipong Sports Stadium”, and it would subsequently be named after Edward Acquah; it would be “Edward Acquah Sports Stadium”. Mr. Speaker, thank you very much.
Mr. Speaker 11:20 a.m.
At the Commencement
of Public Business, Item 5 -- Committee Sitting. Leadership?
Mr. Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 11:20 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, it is the beginning of the Meeting, and we have done justice to today's agenda. Mr. Speaker, in the circumstance, may I move, that this honourable House do now adjourn until tomorrow at ten o'clock in the forenoon.
Mr. John Tia 11:20 a.m.
Mr. Speaker, I rise to
second the motion.
Question put and motion agreed to.
ADJOURNMENT 11:20 a.m.