Debates of 20 Dec 2010

MADAM SPEAKER
PRAYERS 11 a.m.

ANNOUNCEMENTS 11 a.m.

Madam Speaker 11 a.m.
Hon Members, I have received communication from His Excellency the President and if I may read it to the House; it is addressed to the Rt Hon Speaker:
“17th December, 2010
THE RT HON SPEAKER 11 a.m.

OFFICE OF PARLIAMENT 11 a.m.

PARLIAMENT HOUSE 11 a.m.

ACCRA 11 a.m.

PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC 11 a.m.

OF GHANA 11 a.m.

VOTES AND PROCEEDINGS AND THE OFFICIAL REPORT 11 a.m.

Madam Speaker 11 a.m.
Now, we move on to Correction of the Votes and Proceedings of Friday, the 17th December, 2010.
Page 1… 8 --
Mr William O. Boafo 11 a.m.
Madam Speaker, page 8, paragraph 9, line 6, the name “Alhaji Abukari Sumani” has been mis-spelt: “Abukari” has been made “Abuakari”.
Madam Speaker 11 a.m.
All right; we delete the “a”, so it is “Abukari”.
Page 9 -- Yes, Hon Member.
Mr Boafo 11 a.m.
Madam Speaker, page 9, paragraph 11, line 6, consequential correction with regard to the name of “Alhaji” Sumani Abukari”.
Madam Speaker 11 a.m.
All right.
Page 10 …15 - Yes, Hon Member.
Madam Speaker, page 14, the last line 11 a.m.
“The meeting was adjourned at 10.40 p.m.” I am wondering whether that was the correct time; this is because the meeting started at 9.50 a.m. So I do not know whether they sat through all that till 10.40 p.m. or it should be 10.40 a.m.
Madam Speaker 11 a.m.
Who would tell us? Is there a member of the Committee here?
Prof. (Emeritus) Amoako 11 a.m.
Maybe, a member of the Committee may give us the correct time of adjournment; this is because looking at the time the meeting started, I do not think 10.40 p.m. is correct.
Madam Speaker 11 a.m.
From 9.00 a.m. -- How do we correct this one? Is there a member of the Committee who attended the meeting? [Pause.] Let us look at the names and see if somebody is here. Is somebody here who attended the meeting? [Pause.] All right, we will check with them -- Who is it? Hon Prempeh, who were you suggesting?
Dr Matthew O. Prempeh 11 a.m.
Madam Speaker, on the names provided, I find Hon Emmanuel Bedzrah who is said to have attended the meeting. His name is at number vi, so we wanted to find out what time they closed.
Madam Speaker 11 a.m.
If he can help us. Yes, Hon Member?
Mr Kwame A. Twumasi 11 a.m.
Mr Speaker, the meeting ended at 10.40 a.m. We left the place to join the House, before even the commencement of the House.
Madam Speaker 11 a.m.
So it has been corrected.
Prof. (Emeritus) Amoako 11:10 a.m.
Madam Speaker, page 15, number (xv), the name is wrongly spelt - “Ms Evely Brefo- Boateng, the “n” is missing.
Madam Speaker 11:10 a.m.
All right. Thank you. [Pause.]
The Votes and Proceedings of Friday, 17th December, 2010 as corrected, is adopted as the true record of proceedings.
There is no Official Report and no Statements would be taken.
We move on straight to the Commence- ment of Public Business, item 4 -
Mr Cletus A. Avoka 11:10 a.m.
Mr Speaker, I understand the Committee on Finance is engaged in a meeting now with regard to item 4 (i) and (ii), so we would defer those until they are out of the meeting.
Madam Speaker 11:10 a.m.
All right.
Mr Avoka 11:10 a.m.
Similarly, Motion number 5 on page 2 is in connection with the same Committee on Finance; so I would rather propose that we take Motion number 6 and Motion 7 - the consequential Resolution.
Thank you.
Madam Speaker 11:10 a.m.
All right. So we move on to Motion number 6. Is the Hon Minister here to move the Motion?
The Chairman of the Committee to move Motion number 6.
MOTIONS 11:10 a.m.

Chairman of the Joint Committee (Mr Stephen M. E. K. Ackah) 11:10 a.m.
Madam Speaker, I beg to move, that this Honourable House adopts the Report of the joint Committee on Youth, Sports and Culture and Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration on the African Youth Charter. And in doing so, I present your joint Committee's Report. 1.0 Introduction
Chairman of the Joint Committee (Mr Stephen M. E. K. Ackah) 11:10 a.m.


The African Youth Charter was presented to Parliament on Wednesday, 20thOctober, 2010 for ratification in accordance with article 75 of the 1992 Constitution and Standing Orders 183 and 187 of the House. The Speaker referred the Charter to the joint Committee on Youth, Sports and Culture and Foreign Affairs, for consideration and report.

2.0 Deliberations

The Committee met on Tuesday, 23rd November, 2010 and considered the Charter. The Deputy Minister for Foreign Affair and Regional Integration and the Deputy Minister for Youth and Sports were in attendance to assist the Committee in each deliberation. Representatives from the National Youth Council were also in attendance. The Committee is grateful to the Hon Ministers and the National Youth Council representatives for their presence and assistance.

3.0 Reference documents

The Committee made reference to the following documents:

i. The 1992 Constitution; and

i i . The Standing Orders of Parliament;

4.0 Background

Recognizing the fact that the youth are partners and assets for sustainable development, peace and prosperity of the African Continent and the individual member States, the Youth Charter was presented, considered and adopted at the 7th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the AU on 2nd July, 2006, in Banjul, The

Gambia.

The Charter aims at providing the political framework for youth develop- ment on the continent and it seeks to actively involve the youth in develop-ment processes.

The youth makes up more than half of the population of the African Continent and are the most affected by the various challenges faced by the continent, yet this group continues to be on the margins of society's development processes. The African Youth Charter is, therefore, a very important entry point to their active involvement and participation in development processes.

The Youth Charter, which also emphasizes preservation of basic rights afforded to the youth, include the right of development, privacy, protection of family and property, freedoms of movement, expression, association, freedom from discrimination based on race, sex, religion. status, expressed opinions or beliefs.

5.0 Observations and recommendations

The Committee observed that the 7th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the African Union was held in Banjul, The Gambia, on the 2nd July, 2006.

The Committee was informed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integrated that 38 out of 58 member States have already ratified the Charter and therefore made it enforceable.

The Committee also observed that the provisions of the Charter are in conso- nance with the provisions in the 1992

Constitution of Ghana and other existing laws relating to the development of the youth in Ghana.

The Committee was of the view that ratification of the Charter will ensure the commitment of member States to the development of the youth and also guarantee adequate and effective participation of the youth in the running of decision-making institutions of our country and the continent in accordance with the aspirations of the Charter.

In this regard, the Committee noted that the Charter has pegged the age definition of youth between 15 and 35 years. Meanwhile, article 62 (b) of the 1992 Constitution placed the age limit for Presidency at forty (40) years.

The Committee, therefore, was of the view that in order to make the Charter realistic and reflective of our convictions in the involvement of the youth in the affairs of our nation, the Constitutional Review Commission should take note of the provisions of the Charter and consider reviewing the age limit for Presidency in Ghana to at least 35.

The Committee further observed that the Charter provides for encouragement of the youth to actively participate in the democratic process to enhance their commitment to the consolidation of democracy in Ghana and on the continent of Africa.

The Committee also observed that ratifying this Charter, African countries will increase the commitment of Governments towards making resources available to public institutions in Ghana established to promote youth activities such as the Ministry of Youth and Sports, the National Youth Council and the National Commission on Culture.

The Committee wishes to urge the Ministry of Youth and Sports and its agencies to ensure that the Charter, if ratified, would not be treated as mere reference documents by policy-makers and civil society organizations. The Ministry should ensure that adequate education and vigorous implementation of its provisions are reflected in the activities of all MDAs and even private sector institutions of our country.

In order to solidify the provisions of the Charter, the Committee wishes to recommend to the Ministry of Youth and Sports to consider presenting a Bill on equal opportunity and non-discrimi- nation on the grounds of age and other factors in order to make the provisions of the Charter enforceable.

6.0 Conclusion

Considering the importance of providing adequate preparation and opportunity for the growth and development of the youth for the future prosperity of our country and the continent of Africa, the joint Committee wishes to recommend to the House to adopt its Report and ratify the Charter in accordance with article 75 (2) (b) of the 1992 Constitution.

Respectfully submitted.
Madam Speaker 11:10 a.m.
Anyone to second the Motion? Yes Hon Asiamah second the Motion. We are dealing with Motion 6 -
Ranking Member of the Committee (Mr Isaac K. Asiamah): Madam Speaker, I beg to second the Motion.
Madam Speaker, this is a very important Charter that indeed, the whole country should be serious about.
As a Parliament, I believe that the Youth Charter is something that should indeed, work assiduously to ensure that the youth of this country attain the best in
rose
Mr I. K. Asiamah 11:10 a.m.
But Madam Speaker, my worry is that considering the number of Hon Members of Parliament here, I do not think we would be able to do justice to this very important document. And Madam Speaker -
Madam Speaker 11:10 a.m.
Yes, is it a point of order?
Mr E. K. D. Adjaho 11:20 a.m.
Madam Speaker, Motion has been moved. If the Hon Member gets up, it is to second the Motion or not to second it. But the way he is going, we are not too sure exactly what he is doing.
Clearly, if he wants to pass any other comment, he should second the Motion and then continue to say whatever he wants to say. But the way he is going, he is not seconding the Motion except that he is holding some - He should second the Motion and then go ahead. But if he is not ready to second the Motion, we can get somebody to second it and then he can say whatever he wants to say. So far, he is out of order.
Madam Speaker 11:20 a.m.
Well, I did ask him to second the Motion -- or not -- I suppose? Did you second the Motion?
Mr I. K. Asiamah 11:20 a.m.
Madam Speaker, I have the greatest of respect for my Senior Colleague, and as we call him, “Hon Mugabe”. Maybe, the “Mugabe” is catching up with him, so he did not hear me well. Anyway, it is part of the ageing process, so I accept that.
I think that was the first word I used in my contribution. So please, I have already done justice to his concern.
Madam Speaker, I am raising an issue
of quorum, Standing Order 48, that is my major concern. I believe that we must have the right numbers for us to do justice to this very important document that touches the hearts of Ghanaian youth. It is very important. In fact, it is the bedrock of youth development in this country; that is the bedrock.
This Charter is so important that we must own it as a country and owning it as a country demands therefore, that we have the right number here, so that we can do justice to this very important document.
So, Madam Speaker, my concern is on Standing Order 48 -- quorum of this House.
Madam Speaker 11:20 a.m.
Clerk, how many
people do we have?
Mr Adjaho 11:20 a.m.
Madam Speaker, he has raised the issue of quorum but the rule is that you allow for 10 minutes when the bell is rung while Business continues. And then after 10 minutes, we know what to do.
Madam Speaker 11:20 a.m.
Well, you know
we can do business with one-third, but decisions will be taken by half? So let me find out how many people are here and let us decide whether we can just do Business and suspend the decisions. Or ring the bell and let me see how many people are here. So carry on because we have 10 minutes to ring the bell and even if we do not have the quorum -- If we have one-third, we can debate the matter. So I am still waiting to see how many people are here.
Mr I. K. Asiamah 11:20 a.m.
Madam Speaker, I believe that - [Pause.]
Mr Avoka 11:20 a.m.
Madam Speaker, I just want us to take note of also the fact that the the joint Committee on Finance and Energy is meeting in the Speaker's Block on a very important matter for the decision of this House. In the circumstances and on the issue of quorum, are we considering them as part of us as of now in doing business or not?
This is because they are not on the frolic on their own, they are there to do business so that this House will be able to continue with that. So they are there. Besides that, we have one-third of us present here to do business. And it is unfortunate that the Hon Member is raising this in the glare of the public.
Madam Speaker 11:20 a.m.
Hon Majority Leader, we have rung the bell; 10 minutes is not yet up but you have stated that some Hon Members are doing work for us which we need to take today. Do you want to call them here or do you want us to suspend for a little while, so we make up the numbers?
Mr Avoka 11:20 a.m.
Madam Speaker, we can debate and defer the decision and then later -- This is because if we go and call them now, we disrupt the meeting that is taking place there and at the end of the day, it will affect our proceedings here. If they do not bring the Report, we cannot debate. So, we have enough quorum to debate.
Madam Speaker 11:20 a.m.
Hon Majority Leader, I see your point but the point he raised was quorum even for doing business and unless we decide that yes, others are there doing the work which will make up the quorum -
Mr Ambrose P. Dery —rose
Madam Speaker 11:20 a.m.
Yes -
Mr Dery 11:20 a.m.
Madam Speaker, I think we acknowledged that there was going to be this meeting and at the appropriate time we could suspend Sitting and let them join us so that we could continue. So, I think that in the circumstances, the best thing to do is to suspend Sitting.
Madam Speaker 11:20 a.m.
Hon Majority Leader, that is a suggestion -
Mr Avoka 11:20 a.m.
Madam Speaker, the agreement was that we would take item
number 6 and then the Statement in respect of the death of the late Sowu. We agreed that we will take those matters and then suspend Sitting, so that when the joint Committee on Finance and Energy brings the Report, we will come back and continue. That was the aggrement. The agreement was not that we come and have the Prayers, Votes and Proceedings and then suspend Sitting.
Mr Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 11:20 a.m.
Madam Speaker, I think this matter takes us to the issue relating to quorum. I have always insisted that once committees are sitting and those sittings are approved by Madam Speaker, they should be considered as an integral part of the plenary Sitting. Unfortunately, we have never come to a final determination on this matter. Because if it is so approved, then Hon Members of that committee sitting wherever they are will then be deemed to be part of plenary. We have never come to a final determination of this matter and that is why we find ourselves in the quandary.
As regards the situation where we find ourselves not acknowledging that they should be deemed part of the plenary Sitting, in that case, if the person raised a quorum regarding the transaction in the House, and we do not have the number, one cannot then say that let us go on with the debate and suspend Sitting. If we do not have the number to transact business, that is, the quorate number, we cannot proceed.
But as I am saying, I believe that we could be flexible as a House on these matters because when it comes to -- particularly the consideration of Bills, we will never ever have maybe, one-third of us Members of Parliament transacting business relating to any particular Bill. That will mean that it will be very difficult to consider any Bill in this House.
So, we must come to a determination on this matter relating to the quorate number in the House. I believe once we
Madam Speaker 11:20 a.m.
Well, after counting, I think we have a quorum; we have about 75 so we have one-third, and we can do business. It is when we come to taking decisions that we need help.
So can you carry on, you have seconded the Motion.?
Mr I. K. Asiamah 11:20 a.m.
Madam Speaker, in that vein, I will want to continue from the “Background” and I will want all of us to make reference to a document - [Interruption.]
Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 11:20 a.m.
Madam Speaker, I hope that we have more than the 75 that you have said; this is because if you have 75, as you have indicated, it will not represent the quorate number because 75 times 3 is less than 230.
Madam Speaker 11:20 a.m.
I have just been informed it is more than even 75.
Anyway, Hon Member, can we carry on till we come to decisions when I think your people will be here?
Mr I. K. Asiamah 11:20 a.m.
Paragraph 3 of the “Background”, I think it is quite a reflection of the attitude we put up as Members of Parliament towards the development of the youth. The youth makes up more than half of the African Continent and they are the most affected by the various challenges faced by the continent.

As a Parliament, we should be seen to be more interested in fashioning out policies that will better the lot of Ghanaian youth. I do not see it happening and that is very disheartening, Madam Speaker. It is, indeed, not the best and as a country, as legislators, we should be more concerned about the future of the young people of this country.

Madam Speaker, this document is so critical and what touches my heart most is the fact that for the first time, I think across the divide, we are talking of property ownership for the young people of this country.

Madam Speaker, go to the last paragraph of the “Background”, that the Charter wishes to emphasise the preservation of basic rights for the youth including the rights of development, privacy, protection of family and property. For the first time, we are talking of young people acquiring property. So if a political party has a philosophy that talks about owning property, I believe it is something

we must all be proud of. Because no matter what, property-owning is the bedrock of every society. Yes, that is all.
Mr Stephen M. E. K. Ackah 11:20 a.m.
On a point of order. Madam Speaker, my Ranking Member has just made a comment that people should actually own property. What I state by the Constitution's owning property does not mean that one can acquire property anyhow. It should be legally acquired.
Mr I. K. Asiamah 11:20 a.m.
Madam Speaker, indeed, I, as a young person, am very much concerned about acquiring property. My other Hon Colleague knows very well that at his age - [Laughter] - acquiring property, he is going to be at his pension age. So maybe - Madam Speaker, the bottom line is that young people aspire to acquire property - Wealth creation, that is the bottom line. So I believe that for the first time, it is something that we should be proud of.
My other concern is the fact that this document is supposed to be the parent document for all member countries to derive basic policies for the youth.
Madam Speaker, just this year, His Excellency the Vice-President, indeed, hurriedly rushed a National Youth, Policy without proper and wider consultation with other interest groups and that in my opinion, is sad. That if we talk of the youth
of this country, we have various groups of youth in this country.
So to lodge a document that does not reflect the entire aspirations and the generality of Ghanaian youth, indeed, is very sad and that is what I am very much concerned about. At least, that document should have gone through that process of making sure that all sorts of opinions, all the numerous celebrations of the youth are involved but we did not have it and it is very unfortunate.
Madam Speaker, another issue I want to touch on is the fact that - [Inter- ruptions] - Indeed, we also observe that the definition of “youth” is between the age bracket of l5 and 35 and therefore, the call has been that [Interruption] -- For your information, I will be celebrating my 35th birthday on 24th of this month. So I fall within that bracket. The 24th of this month is my 35th birthday. So I am still within the bracket of the definition of the “youth” of the continent.
What about my Chairman? [Laughter] - And Hon Haligah and Hon Ackah --what about them? So, I properly identify myself with the common vision, aspirations and the needs of the Ghanaian youth - [Hear! Hear!] Madam Speaker, therefore, there is the debate that is ongoing about whether indeed, we should have the age limitation for the presidency, fix it at age 35; that has been the debate that is ongoing. Others even claim that it should be l8 years and above, which I beg to differ a bit -- I believe that is too much we are asking for. I believe that at age l8 and above -- Between that bracket, I do not think l8 years is something we should advocate -- But at least, 35 years and above is something I welcome. Madam Speaker, so I believe that the Constitution Review Commission should take this laudable suggestion into consideration, that the young people of this country are asking that the age limitation for President should be 35 and above. That is our clarion call, so that Hon Muntaka and others will
Mr I. K. Asiamah 11:40 a.m.
qualify to contest one day.

Alhaj i Mohammed-Mubarak Muntaka: Madam Speaker, on a point of order.

Madam Speaker, if my Hon Colleague would want to know, I am not 35 years. I am far away from 35 years. So, he should not be putting me in the same group.
Mr I. K. Asiamah 11:40 a.m.
Madam Speaker, I would want to conclude by saying that indeed, 38 out of 58 member States have already ratified this Charter; we were told by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration. And I believe that as a country, we do not just have to ratify it and leave it like that; we do not have to just pay lip-service to whatever we are doing but we should be more committed, indeed, more committed to the cause of the youth of this country.
One very sad thing I have observed in this country is that, when it comes to other negative things, we always use the youth to achieve them. When we talk of conflicts, ethnic conflicts, political violence, foot soldierism or whatever, it is, in fact, with all the negative things, we use the youth to achieve them. [Interruptions.] When it comes to campaigning, we promise the youth so much and when we get political power, we fail to deliver on our promises and Madam Speaker, that accounts for the rampant foot soldierism that we have in this country.
So, I believe that as we ratify this very important document, as political leaders of this country, we should walk the talk, and stop deceiving young people of this
country with so many empty promises that we do not deliver. It is important that we chart a course for the youth that will be an honest course, a course for the youth that will ensure that indeed, we carry them along with us and not a course of deception, failed promises and indeed, a course of lack of political will.
Madam Speaker, with these few words, I beg to second the Motion on the floor.
Alhaji Baaba S. I. Iddrisu 11:40 a.m.
On a point of order. Madam Speaker, thank you very much for giving me this opportunity to comment on my learned Colleague's submission. He has introduced new social categories and we want him to inform us and educate us what he means, for example, by “foot soldierism”. I do not understand it myself. [Interruptions.] He should be the right person to explain to this august House what “foot soldierism” implies.
rose
Madam Speaker 11:40 a.m.
Well, according to the Hon Member, you have introduced a word that he cannot understand. He says he wants you to explain that word to us, or shall I say define it?
Mr I. K. Asiamah 11:40 a.m.
Madam Speaker, I do not - [Interruptions.]
Dr Matthew O. Prempeh 11:40 a.m.
Madam Speaker, I want to explain “foot soldier” for -
Madam Speaker 11:40 a.m.
I do not think your definition will be acceptable.
Mr I. K. Asiamah 11:40 a.m.
Madam Speaker, I yield to my Hon Colleague to give further explanation.
Dr Prempeh 11:40 a.m.
Madam Speaker, I want my Hon Friend from Yendi to understand that “foot soldierism” are those who
chanced him from his constituency -- [Interruptions] - foot soldiers are those who went to lock up the District Chief Executive (DCE); foot soldiers are those who are locking down National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) offices; foot soldiers are those who took over the Adomi Bridge; foot soldiers are those who go about insulting others, that the Vice President was talking about; foot soldiers are those who call people Kokonase okurasefo; foot soldiers are those who burn tender documents; foot soldiers are those in Upper West who went to burn tender documents; foot soldiers are those who are making the country ungovernable for President Atta Mills -- [Inter-ruptions.]
Mr George K. Blankson 11:40 a.m.
Madam Speaker, on point of order.
Madam Speaker, I think the issue on the floor is very important to the development of Africa and the youth of Africa per se.
In this light, I do not think we should reduce it to just mere foot soldier descriptions. If we want to go into details of foot soldier concept, I can say with certainty that foot soldier is alien to National Democratic Congress (NDC) concept. [Interruptions.] I can tell you that when we talk about NDC Party, we talk about cadres. The foot soldier concept is a preserve of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) Government of which people were even being chased in church, when they were going to worship the Lord; they were arrested. So, we should not reduce this Charter in a myopic way of discussion. People were going on leave but now, what do we see? So, if it is something that is abominable to this nation, then they learn it from NPP.
Madam Speaker 11:40 a.m.
I think we end with the definition. He has -
Mr Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 11:40 a.m.
Madam Speaker, on a point of information.
Madam Speaker, I thought that by our rules, if an Hon Member is on the floor and somebody rises on a point of order, and the person does not catch your eye, the original person ends his own interventions, whoever gets up may not be recognised by Madam Speaker. Otherwise, we will be raking old wounds and we will not be making progress.
But having said that, Madam Speaker, just to correct an impression. It cannot be said under any circumstances that foot soldiers are unknown to the NDC. Because it is captured right in their Manifesto. [Interruption.] Madam Speaker, if he cares, let me read page 96 of their own Manifesto to him. Madam Speaker, with your permission, I read paragraph 2 of page 96:

Madam Speaker, so what is my Colleague talking about? Unless he is telling us that he is not aware of the language in their own Manifesto, and which party, we all know, was formed by a soldier -- [Interruptions.] Madam Speaker, let us not go there.

As I am saying, I think that once a delivery has been made, if a person rises in the course of delivery on any point of either information or order or elucidation and the person is not recognised, that should be the end of the matter. Otherwise, we will be raking old wounds and it will not be helpful to the transaction of business in the House.
Madam Speaker 11:40 a.m.
I thank you but sometimes, by the time I get to the person, I am not really knowledgeable about what -- I thought somebody was contributing. But I do appreciate that if we go up and down, we will never finish.
Anyway, I think the definition of “foot soldiers” has been given, so let us move. Let us move on; let us not talk about foot soldiers. Whatever anyone thinks is the proper definition -
rose
Madam Speaker 11:50 a.m.
Are you all going to
talk about foot soldiers or contributing - Are you going to contribute to the debate?
Mr Avoka 11:50 a.m.
Madam Speaker, I thought we were taking contributions in respect of the Motion moved by the Hon Chairman of the Committee on Youth and Sports.
Madam Speaker 11:50 a.m.
Yes, that is what I am saying. I am taking contributions, not on foot soldiers; not on foot soldiers' definition but contributions.
Mr Joe K. Gidisu 11:50 a.m.
Madam Speaker, I want to speak on the foot soldiers' issue.
Madam Speaker 11:50 a.m.
I have just been advised not to be moving up and down, otherwise, we will never finish; which I accept.
Mr J. K. Gidisu 11:50 a.m.
Madam Speaker, I am -
Madam Speaker 11:50 a.m.
I will take your contributions on this -
Mr J. K. Gidisu 11:50 a.m.
Madam Speaker, not contributions. I want to come back to the - [Interruption.] Madam Speaker, my contribution? Yes. I am happy that my Hon Minority Leader - [An Hon Member: Is that a contribution?] Yes,
please.
Madam Speaker, I am happy that my Hon Minority Leader acknowledged the fact that we should not rake old wounds. I want to take a cue from him by saying that he is identifying foot soldiers with the NDC and - [Interruption.] No, that is how it gets.
Yes, whether you like it or not, it is a reference to the NDC situation and that is why he also acknowledges, I believe, the fact that the New Patriotic Party (NPP) in terms of its own polling station agents who took the party to ransom just as the NDC foot soldiers are doing; by way of their reference, then the action troopers are equally very synonymous with the NPP and this will not be the case in terms of reference on the floor. Otherwise, we will be moving up and down.
Madam Speaker 11:50 a.m.
Hon Second Deputy Speaker.
Several Hon Members -- rose --
Madam Speaker 11:50 a.m.
Let us end this.
Prof. Aaron M. Oquaye 11:50 a.m.
Madam Speaker, on a serious note of point of correction.
NPP soldiers have never taken the NPP to ransom and they will never do that. It is not part of our culture. The NPP is a different party from those people who take their party to ransom.
rose
Madam Speaker 11:50 a.m.
Yes, Hon Ahi, are you going to contribute to the Motion? Are you going to contribute -
Mr Avoka 11:50 a.m.
Madam Speaker, I think we have had enough. Let us do the business of the day. Let us limit ourselves to the matter before us.
Madam Speaker 11:50 a.m.
That is what I am - I am moving on to the Motion -
Mr Avoka 11:50 a.m.
Madam Speaker, if any Hon Member is going to make a contribution to the Motion, let us do so. These jerking and diversion will not help.
Madam Speaker 11:50 a.m.
Hon Members, I think the definition of “foot soldiers” can be discussed out of the House. It seems to be an interesting subject for both sides. You can discuss it after we close but right now, let us move on to the Motion.
Any other contribution?
rose
Madam Speaker 11:50 a.m.
Is it a contribution to the Motion? Yes, Hon Shirley Ayorkor Botchway.
Question proposed.
Ms Shirley A Botchway (NPP - Weija) 11:50 a.m.
Thank you, Madam Speaker, for giving me the opportunity to contribute to this very important Motion.
Madam Speaker, we all agree that the youth form a very important constituency in any country and I believe that for most countries, they form quite a sizeable portion of the population.
Signing and ratifying this Charter is very important. Thirty-eight (38) out of 58 member States, I believe, so far, have ratified the Charter which in itself makes it enforceable. We are therefore, very happy that today this House is seeing to the ratification of the Charter.
Madam Speaker, the youth of this country are guided by a National Youth Policy, which a few months ago, was out-doored by His Excellency the Vice President.
When you go to article 12 (b) of the National Youth Policy, it says that:
“The development of a National Youth Policy shall be informed by
extensive consultation with young people and cater for their active participation in decision-making at all levels of governance in issues concerning youth and society as a whole.”
Mr Alban S. K. Bagbin 11:50 a.m.
On a point of order.
Madam Speaker, I am compelled to raise this point of order because the House and the general public are being misled by misinformation.
The initial National Youth Policy we had was in 1999. When the NPP took over power in 2001, they decided to revise that National Youth Policy and did extensive consultations.
In fact, this House, on many occasions, requested to even see the draft and the then Hon Minister in-charge, told this House a number of times that they were still carrying on with the consultations. The document was not finalised until 2008 when we held the elections and the consultations continued until the document was finalised. It was not one government that did the National Youth Policy. It was both. So this idea of there not being consultations is completely misleading. It was done. The records are there.
Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 11:50 a.m.
Madam Speaker, happy news that the Hon Minister is saying that the original proposals were formulated in 1999. And post-2001, when the NPP was revising it, they asked that
Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 11:50 a.m.


it should be brought to Parliament, even during the period of revision. It was not brought to them, that is, to the House. He says the then Hon Minister - There were several Hon Ministers. Maybe, he would tell us which of the Hon Ministers occupied the Ministry.

However, Madam Speaker, the important thing is, to the extent that he considered appropriate that, in the course of the revision, it would have been very useful for it to have come to the House, to broaden consultation, to that same extent, should he also appreciate that when the NDC also took over and wanted to revise, pursuant to the axiom that, “What is good for the goose is equally good for the gander”, that also should have come to us to broaden the process of consultation.

So if he is saying that it has not been brought until now, I think we are speaking the same language. I could not see what is different from the espousal that the Hon former Minority Leader, now the immediate past Majority Leader and currently, the Hon Minister for Water Resources, Works and Housing is talking about. I think we are on the same wavelength.
Madam Speaker 11:50 a.m.
I thank both former Majority Leader and present Minority Leader for the elucidation about this matter that there was consultation before. So probably, we can now carry on.
Ms Botchway noon
Madam Speaker, the Charter spells out the rights of youth to enable them have quality life to become youthful citizens of the nations of Africa, and I believe this is commendable.
Several challenges face the youth and I
think this Charter forms a framework for African countries to base their national youth policies on, in order that the challenges are addressed and that the youth do attain a good station in life, in order that they can be useful citizens.
Madam Speaker, I just want to look at the number of countries that have ratified, and also to compare it to several other Charters in our books that have not been ratified, which are also quite important. I would urge the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration and the various sector Ministries to work on those Charters and Protocols for them to come to the House to be ratified.
I am happy that at a time like this, the Charter on Elections and Governance has been ratified by this House and I hope that this would inform other African countries to also ratify that particular Charter in the light of what is happening in la Cote d'Ivoire. It is extremely important that a Charter such as that, only four countries have ratified it. So by supporting this Motion, I also call on African countries and also the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration to play that lead role to get our sister countries within the continent to also ratify the other Charters that are on the books, especially, the Charter on Elections and Governance
I thank you, Madam Speaker, for giving me the opportunity to support the Motion.
Mr Sampson Ahi (NDC -- Juaboso) noon
Thank you very much, Madam Speaker, for the opportunity to contribute to the Motion on the floor.
Madam Speaker, we all know that issues about the youth are very, very important and that all of us must support this Motion.
Madam Speaker, the unfortunate aspect of current development, is political
Mr Justice Joe Appiah noon
On a point of order.
Madam Speaker, I want Hon Ahi to define the meaning of “Bamba Boys”, because we do not know the meaning; we do not have “Bamba Boys” and he should tell us his age too and the meaning of “Azoka Boys” and “Bamba Boys”, he should tell us now.
Madam Speaker noon
I do not mind about the first question but his age, what has it got to do with it?
Mr Appiah noon
Madam Speaker because of the “Bamba Boys” he mentioned -- I want him to define the meaning of “Bamba Boys”.
Madam Speaker noon
Hon Ahi, he says you used a word, can you explain it?
Mr Ahi noon
Madam Speaker, the meaning of “Bamba Boys” is “a well organized group of youth which are used during by- elections like it happened at Atiwa, where the current NPP National Organiser was on air that he was going to use his group to face squarely the NDC youth.” This was clear all over the country. [Interruption]
So my advice, as we are discussing this Charter, is the fact that, all the political terminologies being developed in the country now, should cease, so that we no longer have “Action Troopers”, we do not have “Bamba Boys” and “Bamba Girls” in any part of the country.
That, we will inculcate the good moral values into the youth, so that in future, when the aged are not there, there would be enough good citizens to take over the affairs of this State.
Mr Isaac K. Asiamah noon
Madam Speaker, I do not think my Hon Colleague has easily forgotten himself when he was slapped here -- [pointing at his own seat] -- he was slapped here. How does he describe that incident in Parliament here? Violence -- at its peak.
Madam Speaker noon
Hon Member, I did not call upon you; you are breaking the rule that we just fashioned for ourselves.
Yes, we have had two from both sides of the House; let us have one each from both sides of the House.
Dr Kofi Asare (NPP - Akwatia) noon
Madam Speaker, I rise to support the Motion.
The youth is the future of this country and I believe we need to help them educate themselves to be able to move this nation forward.
Madam Speaker, I come from a constituency where we had a real land where the “Azoka Boys” were used to terrorise people, break Ministers and Members of Parliament's cars and Hon Baba Jamal was at the end rewarded with a Ministerial appointment. That is not barbarism; we do not need such youth in this country and as such, we should depart and move away from those being described by Hon Ahi. We need to educate our youth; we need to nurture them, so that they become good citizens of this country to develop this nation.
Madam Speaker, with this, I support the Motion.
Madam Speaker noon
I thank you.
Madam Speaker noon


Somebody must catch my eye, I do not know how you are going to do it but catch my eye and I will -- last one. [Pause.] Is there a woman on this side [Some Hon Members: On the left side of the House -- Samia] But she is on your side. She is on the Minority side; is that not it? [Pause.]

Well, since she is neutral, I will call her.

Yes, Hon Samia? After you, we will close the debate.
Ms Samia Y. C. Nkrumah (CPP - Jomoro) noon
Thank you specially for recognizing that we are neutral --
Madam Speaker noon
Well, that is what you said.
Ms Nkrumah 12:10 p.m.
I am happy that we are adopting the African Youth Charter and I believe that this is a reminder to us as an African nation, that we must focus on education, we must focus on training and we must focus on job creation for our young people.
As we have heard, they are indeed, the fastest growing sector of our population. Some survey put the number of African youth in sub-Saharan African who have had no formal education, who are illiterates at 130 million; so we have a big number of illiterate youth in sub-Saharan Africa.
It is also another fact that many of our youth are unemployed and the number is greater than the number of unemployed
adults. So this Charter is a reminder for us to try and implement, to double our efforts to implement policies that will help promote our local industries with the view to job creation. The best way we can help our young people is to create jobs, to implement policies that will make it possible for them to be busy working for our nation.
Thank you, Madam Speaker, for giving me the opportunity.
Madam Speaker 12:10 p.m.
Thank you, Hon Member. This concludes the debate.
Hon Leader, I am minded to suspend the House for a few minutes.
Mr Avoka 12:10 p.m.
Very good, as earlier discussed but we can put the Question on this matter. I think we have the numbers to take the decision, then after that, we can suspend and when the Finance Committee members come back --
Question put and Motion agreed to.
Madam Speaker 12:10 p.m.
Can we now stand the matter down as agreed so that the Finance Committee -
Mr Avoka 12:10 p.m.
Madam Speaker, there is a consequential Resolution that we have to take on this matter.
Madam Speaker 12:10 p.m.
We move now to Motion number. 7.
RESOLUTIONS 12:10 p.m.

Minister for Youth and Sports (Ms Akua Sena Dansua) 12:10 p.m.
Thank you very much, Madam Speaker, for the opportunity to move the Resolution.
Madam Speaker, I beg to move, that
WHEREAS by the provisions of article 75 of the Constitution, any treaty, agreement, or convention executed by or under the authority of the President in the name of Ghana, is made subject to ratifi- cation either by an Act of Parliament or by a Resolution of Parliament supported by the vote of more than one-half of the Members of Par- liament.
IN ACCORDANCE with the said \article 75 of the Constitution, the President has caused to be laid before Parliament, through the Minister responsible for Youth and Sports, the African Youth Charter on 20th October, 2010.
N O W T H E R E F O R E , t h i s Honourable House hereby resolves to ratify the said African Youth Charter.
Madam Speaker, in so doing, I would like first of all, to thank your joint Committee for the good work that they have done on the Charter. As well as to thank Colleagues who have made various comments on this Charter.

Madam Speaker, there were some comments that were made which need to be responded to, so I thought that I should use the opportunity to do so --
Madam Speaker 12:10 p.m.
The Motion has been adopted, so if we will just look at item 7, adoption of the Resolution.
Chairman of the Committee to second the Motion for adoption of the Resolution.
Mr Stephen M. E. K. Ackah 12:10 p.m.
Madam
Speaker, I beg to second the Motion.
Question put and Motion agreed to.
Resolved accordingly.
Mr Avoka 12:10 p.m.
Madam Speaker, we would have taken Motion numbered 5 but as I indicated earlier, the Committee on Finance is busy in your Conference Room now trying to resolve issues with regard to it.
We cannot also start the debate on item 8, that is on the Petroleum Revenue Management Bill because the Committee on Finance is the core committee that handled this Bill and in the absence of the Chairman and the core members and the fact that many of the amendments are standing in the name of the joint Committee, it would not be very useful for us to be debating when they are absent.
In the circumstance, I will apply that we suspend Sitting for some time.
In fact, I have consulted the Chairman of the Committee and he says that they need one hour to complete their work and be in the Chamber. Consequently, Madam Speaker, with your kind indulgence, if you can suspend Sitting until 1.30 p.m.; one hour. The time now is 12.15 p.m.; if we give them one hour, that would be 1.15 p.m. and for the avoidance of doubt, we can start Sitting at 1.30 p.m.
I want Hon Members to bear with us that we have challenges ahead of us; we have to be able to pass the Appropriation Bill before we go on recess next tomorrow, that is, on Wednesday and to be able to complete this Bill. So 1.30 p.m., we will resume and we may have to Sit into the night.
I want to appeal to Hon Colleagues to try and bear with us, that it is the volume of work that we have and not that anybody is being negligent, no. It is just the huge or large volume of work the various
Mr Dery 12:10 p.m.
Thank you, Madam Speaker except to add that in the circumstances, it would be good if Hon Colleagues could have their lunch before we resume, so that we do not have to go out again and have challenges of quorum. So I hope that Leader will make sure that the arrangement has been made for that sort of facility.
Mr Avoka 12:10 p.m.
I agree entirely with him so that by 1 o'clock, lunch should be ready and when we resume here at 1.30 p.m., then we go in full force.
Madam Speaker 12:10 p.m.
I think your concerns will be taken care of.
Mr Avoka 12:10 p.m.
Madam Speaker, we will see how we will organise supper; we will have supper here, do not go anywhere. So we will sleep here; we will close 12 midnight.
Madam Speaker 12:10 p.m.
That is very honourable, so we finish the work.
Thank you, Honourable.
12.20 p.m. -- Sitting was suspended.
2.45 p.m. - Sitting resumed.
MR FIRST DEPUTY SPEAKER
Mr Avoka 12:10 p.m.
Mr Speaker, we will commence our proceedings by taking the Petroleum Revenue Management Bill, 2010 at the Consideration Stage. That would be at page 3 of the Order Paper, item numbered 8.
Mr First Deputy Speaker 12:10 p.m.
Hon Members, Petroleum Revenue Manage- ment Bill, 2010 at the Consideration Stage.
BILLS CONSIDERATION STAGE 12:10 p.m.

  • [Resumption of debate from 10-12- 2010]
  • Mr First Deputy Speaker 12:10 p.m.
    Hon Members, the last time we considered this Bill, we were supposed to put the vote on clause 17.
    Hon Majority Leader, what do we do? Do we move to the next so-called controversial clause?
    Mr Avoka 12:10 p.m.
    Well, Mr Speaker, I think that was the amendment proposed by the Hon Minority Leader. Some few moments ago, I passed through his office and he was in the process of also coming to the Chamber. So I do not know the pleasure of the House.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 12:10 p.m.
    We have finished with all the debates, all the discussions on it.
    Mr Avoka 12:10 p.m.
    We have finished with all the debate; we are left with the decision to be taken.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 12:10 p.m.
    Just to get the numbers to put the Question on it. So what is the next controversial clause, so that we move to that one. Is it clause 19?
    Mr Avoka 12:10 p.m.
    Clause 17.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 12:10 p.m.
    No, the clause 17, we are to put the Question on it.
    Mr Avoka 12:10 p.m.
    We did the controversial one, yes. Clause 19 then. But Mr Speaker, in the light of the limited time that we have, every clause has become important. I think we should just start from clause 8 and go.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 12:10 p.m.
    But I thought the understanding among the Leadership was that once we clear the so-called controversial clauses, some of
    the amendments would fall in their proper places. Therefore, some of the amend- ments we see here would not be relevant again to the Bill.
    Mr Avoka 12:10 p.m.
    That is so.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 12:10 p.m.
    So do we go still with that or we should just go with -
    Mr Avoka 12:10 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, we can continue with clause 19.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 12:10 p.m.
    Very well.
    Mr Avoka 12:10 p.m.
    You see, Mr Speaker, if I
    will come back to ask again -- Clause 19 is a follow-up of clause 17, that we were doing because it has something to do with the amendment for the establishment of the Petroleum Development Fund -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 12:10 p.m.
    Hon
    Majority Leader, there are other amend- ments in clause 17. But you see, we have to know whether we have to clear clause 17 which stands in the name of the Hon Minority Leader before we take most of the clauses in clause 17.
    Yes, Hon P. C. Appiah-Ofori?
    Mr P. C. Appiah-Ofori 12:10 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I want you to explain to me properly. I have an amendment, on clause 17 (b) and I do not know, I have not moved this amendment. I do not know. I want to find out from you. If I am not moving it, does it mean that the House is adopting it? If it is not abeing adopted, then I must move it and explain why the amendment is necessary.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 12:10 p.m.
    You mean the amendment standing in your name in clause 17?
    Mr Appiah-Ofori 12:10 p.m.
    Yes, Mr Speaker.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 12:10 p.m.
    You want to move it?
    Mr Appiah-Ofori 12:10 p.m.
    What I am saying here is, if it is agreed that automatically it is going to be adopted, fine. But if you are not going to do anything and at the end of the day, you are going to ignore it and it will not reflect in the final Bill, then it is wrong because it is very significant. It has a role to play here and I have to explain so that everybody would understand it and I believe that it should form part of the amendment.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 12:10 p.m.
    Yes, Hon P. C. Appiah-Ofori, then move your amendment - [Pause.] Hon P.C. Appiah-Ofori, there is a problem with your amendment. I do not know whether it is (b) or (c ) because there is nowhere the “exceptional” in clause (b) standing in your name -- And then we have an amendment at subclause (c) standing in the name of the Hon Member for Akropong ( Mr W. O. Boafo). So I do not know.
    Mr Appiah-Ofori 12:10 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, well, what I am referring to is clause 17 which precedes clause 18. That is the particular amendment I am trying to move. You see, page 12, before clause 18, there is an amendment standing in my name. That is, “to the National Oil Company as reimbursement of allowable marketing cost”.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 12:10 p.m.
    Hon P. C. Appiah-Ofori, you are talking about clause 17. Clause 17, you mentioned paragraph (b), but paragraph (b), we said before “exceptional” insert the word “for” and there is no “exceptional” in paragraph (b). But we have “exceptional” in paragraph (c).
    There is also an amendment standing in the name of the Hon Member for Akropong to the paragraph (c). So I want you to move your amendment - yes?
    Mr Joseph Yieleh Chireh 12:10 p.m.
    Mr Speaker,

    I think that the last time we exhausted the issue of that “for”, that was where we said that it did not make grammatical sense. So I do not think that is what he is talking about. We voted on that. I remember that very well. So if he is talking about clause 17 (xlv). But we took a decision. He was talking about payment into some -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 12:10 p.m.
    I think it was rejected?
    Mr Chireh 12:10 p.m.
    Yes, Mr Speaker.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 12:10 p.m.
    Yes, it was rejected.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 12:10 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I think it was rejected for the wrong reason. You know, the Hon Member had filed two amendments. One was to the deletion of the word “to”, that is in the opening sentence, that we should delete the word “to.”, “Disbursement from the Petroleum Account now Petroleum Holding Fund shall only be made”. Then he said the “to” should come to (a) and then another to (b), and for (c), he said it should be “for”. If you read it that way, then you would understand the import of his amendment. So that it would read:
    “Shall only be made -
    (a) to the Consolidated Fund in support of the national budget;
    (b) to the Ghana National Petroleum Fund for the purpose of savings and investments;
    (c) for exceptional deductions.”
    I think that is the arrangement that he proffered. If you read it that way, then you would understand the import of his amendment.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 12:10 p.m.
    And what
    was the decision of the House on it?
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 12:10 p.m.
    I think it was changed to “into” - [An Hon Member -- No, he had “into”. But we rejected it] - He had “into” but that was rejected. Now, if you reject “into” and then retain “to” and then you delete it from the opening clause to begin (a) and also to begin (b), then the “for” would have relevance.
    Mr Chireh 12:10 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, if you look at it, I think if you start with the clause 17 where he said “only to be made to”, then you can apply to (a) and (b). But it can apply to (a) and (b), that is to the Consolidated Fund to the Petroleum Fund and for exceptional, so that one would be appropriate here.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 12:10 p.m.
    That is what the Hon Minority Leader too was saying.
    Mr Chireh 12:10 p.m.
    I was not hearing him properly. The way he was talking; you know his grammar is always very difficult.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 12:10 p.m.
    Hon Appiah-Ofori, move your amendment and let me put the Question.
    Mr Appiah-Ofori 12:10 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, as it has been explained, instead of using “to” to cover the three items I had earlier moved -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 12:10 p.m.
    You have to amend it; it is (c), not (b). It is paragraph (c).
    Mr Appiah-Ofori 12:10 p.m.
    Paragraph (c) of clause 17? Mr Speaker, paragraph (c) of clause 17? - this is why I am saying -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 12:10 p.m.
    It is paragraph (c) of clause 17?
    Mr Appiah-Ofori 12:10 p.m.
    Yes, I am saying that it should be “for exceptional deductions”, not “to”. In other words, the “to” there should not remain in the way it is because if it stays where it is, then it
    means it covers items (1), (2), (3). But you cannot say -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 12:10 p.m.
    Hon P. C. Appiah-Ofori, we have passed there. What we have is your paragraph (c), so you just move the amendment for your paragraph (c). So what you have to do is to let the Hansard and the Table Office capture you.
    You should first change the paragraph (b) there, that the amendment is paragraph (c) but not (b), then we all correct it, you move your amendment and then I put the Question.
    Mr Appiah-Ofori 2:55 p.m.
    All right. Mr Speaker, I beg to move, my amendment as suggested by you.
    Thank you.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 2:55 p.m.
    Hon
    Member, that is not the way we move amendments. There is no exception to paragraph (b). So when I was even reading it, I saw the problem before I saw the (c) and I realize that it was (c) that you are talking about. So you should correct it so that the Hansard can capture it.
    Mr Appiah-Ofori 2:55 p.m.
    This is what I have been saying that we cannot use the expression “be made to”. Yes, and so what is it again?
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 2:55 p.m.
    Hon Member for Old Tafo? Did you listen to the Hon Minority Leader and the Minister for Local Government and Rural Development when they were making their submissions, which inure to your benefit?
    Dr Anthony A. Osei 2:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I
    want to plead with the senior Member that he should let me make the amendment on his behalf so that we can move on.
    Mr Speaker, I beg to move, clause 17, paragraph c, before “exceptional”, insert “for”.
    Question put and amendment agreed to.
    Mr William Boafo 2:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I beg to move, clause 17 paragraph (c) at the end, add the following new paragraph.
    “Disbursement from Petroleum Account shall only be made to specific provisions in any other enactments in addition to (a), (b) and (c).”
    Mr Speaker, the reason for the
    amendment is to take care of provisions in future enactments whereby, in regard to the source for funds for any authority that may be established, there would be allocations from the petroleum revenue.
    For example, if we agree to set up a Western Regional Development Authority, or if we agree to set up after the exploration of the Keta Basin, Volta Regional Development Authority and in that enactment establishing the authority, with regard to the source of funds there may be a provision in that Bill that one of the sources of the funds, would be a percentage from the Petroleum Account.
    So this is just to take care of future
    provisions in the subsequent enactments.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 2:55 p.m.
    Why do you not say, “any other” or “any other enactment”, if that is what you want to achieve? Why do you not just say after “act” add “or any other enactment”?
    Mr Boafo 2:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, if we do so the exceptional deductions which is being referred to here -- I think it is referable to
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 2:55 p.m.
    Very well, you are right.
    Yes, Chairman of the Committee on Finance?
    Mr James K. Avedzi 2:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, first of all, I want to oppose the amendment on the grounds that any other enactment that will require disbursement from the Petroleum Holding Fund would be an exceptional deduction or whatever. So it would fall conveniently under (c). That is the first point.
    Secondly, if this amendment is carried, it would defeat the intended re-fencing of the petroleum revenue.
    So on that note, I oppose the amend- ment.
    Dr A. A. Osei 2:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I want to disagree with my Chairperson. The exceptional deductions being mentioned only apply to provisions of this Act. So it cannot be that if any enactment comes, it would be applicable. So it is not consistent. This is why we are offering that amendment. But if you look at -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 2:55 p.m.
    Hon Chairman, the enactment that they are talking about would have to come to this House. So if the enactment comes, if you do not agree, it would not be carried. If it is agreed, before it is carried. So I do not see any harm in this amendment.
    Dr A. A. Osei 2:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, if he can read his amendment again, so that we follow -- I think -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 2:55 p.m.
    The amendment is clear.
    Dr A. A. Osei 2:55 p.m.
    It is not clear, Mr Speaker. In (d), we have “investments and”. We cannot have the “end” -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 2:55 p.m.
    In fact, it should be “or”. He should actually add the new clause altogether, given the explanation that is given. It should be a new subclause. He can make it a (d), given the explanation that you gave to my earlier query to your amendment. If you add it to the (c) directly, it would mean that you are referring to this Act. So you are creating another ground for any future reference.
    Mr Boafo 2:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, before I proposed the amendment, I sought your permission to recast the -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 2:55 p.m.
    Let us get the new -
    Mr Boafo 2:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I said - “paragraph (c), at the end add the following new paragraph”. So I would leave it to the draftsmen to -- And I did it simply because of another amendment by Hon P. C. Appiah-Ofori -- We have not reached there, but he was referring to another assertion to National Oil Company. That is why I did not mention paragraph (d).
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 2:55 p.m.
    Very well.
    Dr A. A. Osei 2:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I know he says we should leave it to the draftsmen; but talking about “disbursement from the Petroleum Holding Fund shall be made to specific provisions” would not be correct. That is why I want him to read his amendment, because we have changed it a bit now.
    We have the 2 applying to (a) and (b) and we have the 4 applying to (c). So if we have (d), it has to be cast properly, so we follow what it is. You cannot disburse to provisions in an Act; it would not make sense at all. So we need to know exactly what his intentions are so that we can follow the amendment, as well as removing the “and” there in (c).
    Mr Boafo 2:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I do not understand what -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 2:55 p.m.
    No, what he is saying is that the (a) and (b), the 2 affects them, and then the (c), 4 precedes it and therefore, if you go and create a new paragraph straightaway, there would be a problem with the grammar. That is the point that the Hon Member is making.
    Mr Boafo 3:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I would just preface it with “to” -- “disbursement from the Petroleum Account shall only be made to specific provisions in any other enactment”.
    Mr Alban S. K. Bagbin 3:05 p.m.
    Thank you. Mr Speaker. To start with, this House took a decision amending clause 17 (2) to read: “Disbursement from the Petroleum Holding Fund shall be made only to”, not “shall only be made to” but “shall be made only to”.
    The intention of this clause, I believe, is to limit the number of beneficiaries of the money in this account. So if you are opening it up to provisions of other enactments, I cannot understand that. The other enactments, when we get there and there is the need to enact for them to benefit, we will do so. There will be a reason for us to open it up again. But as of now, the intension is to restrict it to this.
    In fact, they said “for exceptional deductions according to the provisions of this Act”. So you are now opening it to other enactments.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:05 p.m.
    Hon Member for Akropong, the point the Minister just made is that, it will take care of the kind of situation that you are talking about, assuming we create the Western Regional Development Fund or whatever fund; the (c) will take care of it because it is in accordance with the provisions of this Act. Therefore, the amendment cannot
    stand. That is the point that the Minister is making.
    Mr Boafo 3:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, if we do away with “exceptional deductions” -- because that expression restricts it to clause 25.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:05 p.m.
    Well, let me hear from the Minority Leader and the Majority Leader.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 3:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, in this Bill, once revenues are received into the Petroleum Holding Fund, there are only two situations whenever payments could be made outside the Heritage, Stabilisation and what we may decide to call the Petroleum Development Fund or the Budget Account when we come to that. Mr Speaker, those two areas are captured in clause 25 (1) and (2) and (9).
    Apart from those two areas, there are no other provisions for paying monies outside the remit of these three funds or accounts or whatever. So it cannot be that if a western corridor fund is created, it will find expression in this Bill; it cannot be.
    The exceptional deductions are provided for only in Clause 25 (1) and (2) and Clause 9 (1) and (2); outside Clause 25 (1) and (2), the only other consideration is in respect of management fees. It is only in respect of management fees that it finds expression elsewhere; management fees must be paid. So Mr Speaker, those are the only areas.
    So the western corridor thing, I do not know how we are going to situate it here; it is not here. And indeed, the reason for this whole Bill is to make sure that whatever the finances, the revenues are intended for, as captured in this Bill, are implemented to the letter and not anything outside this Bill.
    Mr Avoka 3:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, upon first thought, I seem to appreciate the position taken by the Hon Minister for Water Resources, Works and Housing, in the sense that as far as the spirit of this enactment, this Bill is concerned, if it
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:05 p.m.
    Hon Minister for Water Resources, Works and Housing, in view of the reference made to clause 25, do you still stand by the point that you made earlier by virtue of the reference to clause 25 by the Minority Leader which defines what exceptional --
    Mr Bagbin 3:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I think that my position is the same as that of the Minority Leader. What the Minority Leader simply did was to draw our attention to “exceptional circumstances” under the Act. So I was saying that if there
    was the need for us in future to legislate for an institution to benefit from this Fund, it would be done in that legislation but we cannot legislate in this Act in anticipation of the establishment of an institution that will benefit from this Fund. That is my point.
    Mr Boafo 3:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, we have considered clause 1 (2) and put the Question which was agreed to, that in case provisions in any enactment which are in conflict with the provisions in this Act, the provisions in this Act will prevail over the other one; if I may read:
    “Where there is any conflict between the provisions of this Act and any other enactment or (b) terms of a petroleum authorisation on the collection and use and management of petroleum revenue, the provisions of this Act shall prevail.”
    Mr Speaker, we know the general rule of interpretation to be that subsequent Acts will prevail over the earlier ones. But here we have made specific provision that in the case of any conflict, the provisions of this Act will prevail.
    My understanding is that, if in future we are to legislate in view of this provision making provisions, for deduction from the Petroleum Account to Western Corridor Development Authority or the Volta Regional Development Authority, that provision will have to succumb to the provisions of this Act, which does not make provision for future allocations.
    This is my contention. I stand to correction.
    Dr A. A. Osei 3:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, we have to look at the fundamental principle underlining the Bill which is that, if you will, we are looking at two sides of it; the savings aspect of it and the consumption and investment aspects of it. So far, we have put ourselves to the position where for the savings aspect endowment part, we
    agree that it must be done.
    The Minority Leader was trying to have a change of language such that we look at that aspect that is going either to the Budget or the Special Fund called the Petroleum Development Fund. If the intention is to have a Western Corridor and SADA, Ashanti Region Corridor, it can always be catered for under either the Petroleum Development Fund or the Budget Funding Account. If we do not limit ourselves to those two uses of the Fund, we are defeating the fundamental principle. If the Minister wants to come and say that create a Western Corridor, you put it in the Budget Fund or the Petroleum --You outline it. So it would be allowable. But if you start opening it up to some type of not intended budgetary amount or savings amount, then we have lost it.
    So I believe that the fact that you have either the Budget Funding Amount or the Petroleum Fund, any other expenditure you want to make can be covered there, so that we stay with the consumption aspect of it. If we do not do that, we will have serious difficulty.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:15 p.m.
    Are we putting the Question? But you see, the Hon Minister for Water Resources, Works and Housing has made a very important point which the Hon Member for Akropong responded to by drawing our attention to clause 1 of the Bill. But that is legal engineering; all that you need to do in a latter legislation is to say that notwithstanding section so and so and -- that is all; that ends the matter. Notwithstanding section so and so - so I think that we can -
    Mr Joseph B. Aidoo 3:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, what the Hon Member for Akropong is seeking to do is to create the framework
    and I think that framework is necessary especially for enactments that could be outside this particular -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:15 p.m.
    But - If you are creating another one, that law will have its own framework and the object. All that we need to do to defeat section 1, will be to say “notwithstanding section (so and so) of this law . . .”
    Question put and amendment nega-
    tived.
    Mr P. C. Appiah-Ofori 3:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I beg to move, clause 17, add the following new paragraph:
    “(d) to the National Oil Company as reimbursement of allowable marketing cost.”
    Mr Speaker, let us look at clause 17, it reads 3:15 p.m.
    “Disbursement from the Petroleum Account shall only be made to . . .”
    Three expenditure items. Apart from these three expenditure items, no expenditure shall be met from the Petroleum Account or Petroleum Fund, going by this. But let us look at clause 4, (3), it states --
    “The allowable marketing cost shall be reimbursed to the National Oil Company as approved by the Minister and shall be a charge on the Petroleum Account.”
    If expenditure is to be charged on anything, then it means payment would be made from it. Appropriately, therefore, instead of three items, the Consolidated Fund, the Ghana Petroleum Fund, the exceptional deductions, and going by clause 4 (3) as I said, then it should be to the National Oil Company as reimburse- ment of the allowable marketing cost. This expenditure too, by this Act, should be met from the Petroleum Account or Fund.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:15 p.m.
    Hon Appiah-Ofori , I thought that the disbursement from (a) was supposed to take care of that in clause 4.
    Hon Deputy Minority Leader -
    Mr Dery 3:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I was thinking that if the (c), “exceptional deductions according to the provisions of this Act” is an allowable cost. Is it not? Does it not fall under that? So why do we have to continue repeating?
    Dr A. A. Osei 3:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, but more importantly, the budget for the GNPC is supposed to cater for the alarming marketable cost which we have provided for in the Budget. The two hundred and sixty-two that was talked about by the Ministry of -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:15 p.m.
    Which is paragraph (a) of clause 17?
    Dr A. A. Osei 3:15 p.m.
    Yes.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:15 p.m.
    Is that paragraph (a) of clause 17?
    Dr A. A. Osei 3:15 p.m.
    Well, that is where we are going to go to see what it is. We are yet to debate on -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:15 p.m.
    No! But in principle, whether it is a fund or not, there is some money available -
    Dr A. A. Osei 3:15 p.m.
    Yes, yes.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:15 p.m.
    So that will take care of the disbursable money that Hon Appiah-Ofori is talking about.
    Hon P. C. Appiah-Ofori, did you get the point?
    Mr Appiah-Ofori 3:15 p.m.
    Maybe, you yourself do not understand what I am saying.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:15 p.m.
    No, I --
    Mr Appiah-Ofori 3:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, if
    you look at clause 17, it is very clear that only three expenditure items shall be met from the Petroleum Account, now called Petroleum Fund; only three expenditure items.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:15 p.m.
    Yes, the Hon -
    Mr Appiah-Ofori 3:15 p.m.
    Let me finish.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:15 p.m.
    Hon P.
    C. Appiah-Ofori, the point being made, which has been made strongly by both the Ranking Member and the Deputy Minority Leader is that the (a) is going to take off after they have finished with the Consolidated Fund or whatever we shall call it at the end of this Bill; it is going to take care of what has been provided for in clause 4. And so it has been taken care of.
    Mr Appiah-Ofori 3:15 p.m.
    Please, please, Mr Speaker -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:15 p.m.
    It is not independent of paragraph (a) of clause 17; it is not. That is the point being made.
    Mr Appiah-Ofori 3:15 p.m.
    You see, I am referring you to clause 4 (3); as I said, “the allowable marketing cost shall be reimbursed to the National Oil Company as approved by the Minister and shall be a charge . . .”. Here, you specify only three expenditure items which are being a charge on the Petroleum Account. But here it is mentioned that this expenditure too is going to be a charge on it. It means therefore, that they should be four expenditure items. There should be four expenditure items to be met from the Petroleum Fund.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:15 p.m.
    Hon Member for Old-Tafo, the point Hon Appiah-Ofori is now making is that if you look at that amendment there, they say it is going to be a charge on the Petroleum Holding Fund and therefore, it is going
    to be taken directly from the Petroleum Holding Fund - that is the point he is now making.
    Dr A. A. Osei 3:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the first item, “(a) disbursement shall be made into the Consolidated Fund”; the point we are making is that the allowable marketing cost is part of what is going into the Consolidated Fund. So it is already being catered for. It is there and it is going to come as Petroleum Development Fund, if you want to call it that. But GNPC's budget is already on the Consolidated Fund, otherwise, there will be double -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:15 p.m.
    Hon Member, the point Hon Appiah-Ofori is making is that if - yes, before you come in. The point that he is making is that it is going to be a charge on the Petroleum Holding Fund.
    Mr Avedzi 3:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, we proposed an amendment to delete the clause that Hon P. C. Appiah-Ofori is referring to completely, which we did here. So that, that does not hold again.
    But if you go to clause 7 that he is referring to, the proposal that came from the Committee which was agreed to by the House was that the payment into the Petroleum Holding Fund shall be a net of
    “(a) the equity financing cost inclu- ding advances and interests of the Republic's current and participatory interest and
    (b) the equivalent in barrelsof oil
    -- 3:25 p.m.

    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:25 p.m.
    Hon P. C. Appiah-Ofori, in view of this information
    that that aspect on the Petroleum Holding Fund as a charge has been deleted from the Bill, as a result of an earlier amendment, are you going to withdraw your amendment or I should put the Question?
    Mr P. C. Appiah-Ofori 3:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, well, I am not aware of the deletion of that aspect. If it does not exist, then my amendment is unnecessary.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:25 p.m.
    So, are you withdrawing?
    Mr Appiah-Ofori 3:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, reluctantly, yes.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:25 p.m.
    Very well, amendment withdrawn.
    Hon Members, there is only one amendment to clause 18 standing in the name of the -- No!
    Should we take the vote on clause 17? We should? When we started, you were not in and then we also thought that we had done justice to that part. We have spoken a lot on that amendment.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 3:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, so, what happens to it? What happens to the amendment proposed?
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:25 p.m.
    It is still there.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 3:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, absolutely. So why not, maybe, allow us to encapsulate the argument and then you put the Question?
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:25 p.m.
    Again?
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 3:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, what is stated there, “debate to continue”; is it for nothing that it was put there?
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:25 p.m.
    But that came from the Table Office and they were wrong because that day you spoke; we

    gave you the last chance to speak on the matter. But if you want to raise a point, I will give you the chance to speak again. This is an amendment, so a person can speak more than once. So, I will give you the chance to speak on it.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 3:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, yes, because if the signal is that we concluded the debate, then you ought to have put the Question.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 3:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, why no? You ought to have put the Question.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:25 p.m.
    The number we had at that time was 45, and that was why we did not put it.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 3:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, you should not go there. You said we should come and continue because you were not going to go beyond 2 o'clock. So let us encapsulate it and then you put the Question and then we move on. Absolutely.
    Mr Avoka 3:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I think that it is only fair that to refresh our memories and minds, we give him two minutes to recap his amendments and then the Chairman or somebody who is from the other side, any other fellow who is on the side, to also recap their position and we take the Question, in fairness to all of us, rather than just to put it on the -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:25 p.m.
    Hon Majority Leader, do you want us to continue? I was going straight to clause 19, then I realized that there were non- contentious issues apart from the one that the Hon Minority Leader has moved. So, I thought that we could quickly dispose of it while we defer the Question on clause
    17. So, while we defer the Question on the amendment standing in the name of the Hon Minority Leader and come to it later --
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 3:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the reason is, if we get to clause 19, it is really going to continue the remit of -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:25 p.m.
    So, there is a relationship between clause 17 -
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 3:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, absolutely. I do not see why we should be avoiding this obstacle. Let us scale over it and move on.
    Mr Avoka 3:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I agree because clause 19 has a bearing on clause 17. If we do not take clause 17, it means we cannot take clause 19. So, we have to hold the bull by the horns.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:25 p.m.
    Hon Minority Leader, the amendment is in your name.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 3:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, my postulation has always been that if government is purposed to do something, you cannot stop government. After listening to the arguments, the quality of the debates and so on, if government insists that this is what they want to do, you cannot physically prevent it from doing what they want to do. So, let us take the arguments; let us just rehash and then we move on, and then if we have -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:25 p.m.
    I agree entirely with you except that I do not want to do double work.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:25 p.m.
    Do you
    get my point?
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 3:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, which is?
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:25 p.m.
    I agree with -
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 3:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I beg to move, clause 17, paragraph (a), delete and insert the following:
    “the Petroleum Development Fund as part of the consolidated national budget”.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:25 p.m.
    Hon Members, let us listen to the Hon Minority Leader.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 3:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the argument was that we should create a Petroleum Development Fund, from which the Hon Minister for Finance and Economic Planning will present a programme of activities, in presenting the normal Budget, to be funded from the Fund. The Hon Minister for Water Resources, Works and Housing even suggested that whereas the principle is good, he thought the designation of the Fund, Petroleum Development Fund was a bit confusing, for which reason, he suggested that we call it Special Projects Fund.
    This whole Bill is about transparency and accountability and if we have to be very transparent and accountable in the use of the revenue, then we believe that proceeding on the way that we are suggesting (Petroleum Development Fund or the Special Projects Fund) will be better in the sense that it will even allow the Minister for Finance and Economic Planning to monitor the application of the revenue and then be in direct contact with the various sector Ministers regarding the application of the revenue.
    Mr Speaker, going into the Budget as has been proposed this year, it is difficult for the Minister for Finance and Economic Planning or any other person to determine exactly which areas these monies are going to and Parliament then will have a herculean task in oversighting the Executive to identify the areas, the projects and programmes that the oil revenue will be funding. It is why some of us are calling for the setting up of this account to receive the money for which expenditures will be made in respect of specific programmes of activities or projects.
    Mr Speaker, on 15th December, the President in inaugurating the Floating Production Storage and Offloading (FPSO) facility and marking the beginning of the pumping of crude oil into the FPSO, said to Ghanaians that oil revenue must be for all Ghanaians and not only for a few. He said in addition that we should use the resource for the current genera-tion and generations yet unborn.
    Mr Speaker, how does this translate? If there are projects for this current generation, we will be able to mark them out, that this is what we did with the oil revenue. For future generations, we will also be able to tell, that is, how much we have in the Fund for Heritage or may be specific projects that we think will inure to the benefit of future generations. Mr Speaker, what better thing to do than to let us have this separate accounts from which we will be able to tell how to disburse the funds?
    Mr Speaker, the other day I spoke about inconsistencies in output figures and I was referring to various statements attributed to the Minister for Energy himself and the Minister for Finance and Economic Planning, separate figures given at separate occasions. Mr Speaker, if it is that the revenue should hit the Consolidated Fund directly, how do we monitor exactly what has come into the
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:35 p.m.
    Hon Minority Leader, now you are going back to principles.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 3:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, it is not about principles. It is something that has occurred since the argument was proferred in the Chamber.
    Mr Speaker, the said person, Jean Francois Railing who is the African
    Manager of Chrome, a leading manu- facturer of industrial flow measuring equipment in Germany, said to Ghana that we should be very careful about how the petroleum on the FPSO is going to be metred, otherwise, we may be cheated. Mr Speaker, all relates to how much as a nation we could have access to the relevant information and nobody wants to accuse the Minister for Finance and Economic Planning for anything untoward. Nobody wants to accuse the Minister for Energy for anything untoward but Mr Speaker ,we should not create space to allow for suspicions, so that tomorrow, anybody could rise up to say that they were very economical with the truth.
    If we should have this money going into the Petroleum Holding Fund, this one into the Petroleum Development Fund and the other going into the Stabilisation and the Heritage Fund, we will then be able to assess exactly how much we have. If the money is not up to what we expect as a nation, we can respond to this.
    Mr Speaker, that is why we are saying that as a nation, we should create these funds. It is not going to be a fund on the lines of the Consolidated Fund because that is the remit of the Holding Fund. This one, I do not know, we may even ultimately call them the Stabilisation Account, Heritage Account or Petroleum Development Account.
    The Fund on the lines of article l75 is the Petroleum Holding Fund but for transparency and accountability, we are proposing that we have the Petroleum Holding Fund to enable us better target programmes to be designed by Govern- ment itself to enable us apply the receipts on these programmes of activities and projects to allow us monitor the appli- cation of the revenue, to oversight the use of the resource.
    Mr Speaker, this is what informed the proposal for the creation of the Petroleum Development Fund as part of the Consolidated Fund of the Annual
    Budget Fund.
    Mr Speaker, I thank you.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:35 p.m.
    Hon Members, I will take only one from this side and then I - we have spoken on this matter for a very long time. So just to refresh our memory, as the Hon Majority Leader said, to refresh your memory so that I will put the Question.
    Mr Avedzi 3:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, as I said last week, I oppose the creation or establish- ment of an additional fund under this law.
    Mr Speaker, the reason for which the Minority Leader is proposing this fund is to have projects that can be identified as the oil revenue projects and this can conveniently be taken care of under clause 22 of the Bill.
    We are yet to get to clause 22, so if we are going to decide as a nation, as a Parliament that the oil revenue, the usage should be limited to only some sectors of the economy, that can be done under clause 22.
    So an additional fund is not necessary at all under this particular arrangement. Example is, we have a HIPC Fund, it is not a Fund created separately from the Consolidated Fund but we can identify projects that are funded from the HIPC Fund.
    The purpose of this Bill is to have an amount transferred from the Petroleum Holding Fund to support the Budget and therefore, go to Consolidated Fund. So if clause 22 of the Bill is saying that that money, which is lodged in the Consoli- dated Fund should be used for project a, b, c, we can conveniently track and monitor the use of the revenue from the petroleum sector to see whether that money is being used actually for the projects. So, creation of another Fund is not relevant, to the best of my knowledge.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:55 p.m.
    Hon Members, I will go for a headcount. [Interruptions.]
    Hon Members, a Member can be counted even though he did not hear the Question being put. That is our rule.
    Question put and the House counted.
    AYES -- 60
    NOES -- 81
    ABSTENTIONS -- 0
    Amendment negtived.
    Clause 17 as amended ordered to stand part of the Bill.

    Clause 18 -- Benchmark Revenue.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:55 p.m.
    Hon Minority Leader, even though this is not one of the controversial clauses, there is an amendment standing in your name. I want you to move it so that we just dispose of it.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 3:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, this is really in respect of the arrangement.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:55 p.m.
    It is a re- arrangement?
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 3:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, it is just a re-arrangement.
    Mr Speaker, I beg to move, clause 18, delete and insert the following 3:55 p.m.
    “The Minister shall estimate and certify the Benchmark Revenue using the formula set out in the First Schedule not later than September 1st of each year.”
    Mr Avedzi 3:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I have no objection to the proposed amendment.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:55 p.m.
    It is standing in your name, so how can you have objection to your own amendment?
    Mr Avedzi 3:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I support the amendment.
    Question put and amendment agreed to.
    Clause 18 as amended ordered to stand part of the Bill.
    Clause 19 -- The Annual Budget Funding Amount.
    Dr A. A. Osei 3:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, after the vote, this one is immaterial.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:55 p.m.
    That is why the Leadership agreed with Madam Speaker that some of these amendments will fall in their places when we dispose of them. So you have to advise me.
    Which of the amendments as a result of what has been negatived are no longer necessary? This will allow us to make progress.
    My duty here is to call the clause and you then get up and tell me. If I am more convinced, then I will use the clause that is consistent. If it is inconsistent with another clause, then I will -
    But the Hon Minority Leader earlier told me that there was a relationship between clauses 17 and 19 and so mine is to call him to announce that he is withdrawing it or not, then we know what to do.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 3:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, clause 19 (2), I propose an amendment. Really, it was to allow for the allocation to them being made into the Petroleum Development Fund. That, of course, will not stand any longer in view of the decision that has been taken.
    Dr A. A. Osei 3:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, some of us are getting lost. We are on page 13 of the Order Paper, so if we can do page 13 and see which ones are immaterial, then we can follow you before you go onto the substantive -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:55 p.m.
    Yes, that is what we have to do because there are series of amendments standing in the name of the Hon Minority Leader and others. So what we have to do is, definitely, the first amendment goes.
    What about the second, Hon Chairman?
    Mr Avedzi 3:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I beg to move, clause 19, subclause 1, delete “Beginning the year 2011”.
    Mr Speaker, it means that phrase is not relevant. Therefore, the Committee is proposing that the Annual Budget Funding Amount from the Petroleum Revenue shall be set, and therefore, “beginning the year . . .” is not relevant.
    Question put and amendment agreed to.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:55 p.m.
    Hon Minority Leader, you are deleting the next one after the Hon Chairman's amendment; it is going.
    Yes, Hon Ato Forson.
    Mr Avedzi 3:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I just want to propose consequential amendment, that anywhere we see “Petroleum Develop- ment Fund”, we do not take it.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:55 p.m.
    My Hon Chairman, it is not a consequential amendment because the amendment itself has not been carried. So why is it conse-quential amendment? If it had been carried, then it would be consequential but we have not carried it, so how can it be consequential?
    Mr Cassiel A Forson 3:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I beg to move, clause 19, subclause 1, line 2, delete “within the range of fifty to” and insert “shall not be less than”.
    Mr Speaker, I believe that at this stage
    of our national development where there is a lot of infrastructural deficit and an urgent need for us to improve our education and healthcare, it makes no sense for us to save more than 30 per cent of our petroleum revenue.
    Mr Speaker, most importantly, at this stage, Ghana will be saving our petroleum revenue at an annual percentage rate of two per cent, and then borrow also at an APR of eight per cent.
    On this note, I believe that, at this stage of our national development, there is an urgent need for us to, at least, use 70 per cent of the petroleum revenue to develop our nation.
    Dr Opoku Matthew Prempeh 3:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I rise to oppose the amendment for lack of clarity.
    Mr Speaker, when you say “the Annual Budget Funding Amount of petroleum revenues shall not be less than 70 per cent of the Benchmark Revenue”, as his amendment proposes to do, what does he really mean?
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:55 p.m.
    Hon Member, so are you therefore suggesting that they should take hundred per cent? And how then do you establish the
    Heritage and the Stabilisation Funds? That is the point they are making. If you say by your amendment that they can take hundred per cent -
    Dr Prempeh 3:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, if the Hon Colleague who proposed the amendment were here -- the House has already passed certain amendments as regards clause 5 and earlier, which stand in direct contradiction with what he is trying to do, So maybe, he should reconsider and come back clearer.
    Mr Charles S. Hodogbey 3:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, if you read the amendment proposed, if we delete the “within the range of fifty to” and you read from the beginning of what he is trying to insert, the whole English does not go very well - the language. If you look at it, “the annual Budget Funding Amount from petroleum revenues shall be set . . .” His proposed amendment is to insert “shall not be less than” when we add that to it. Mr Speaker, the language is not -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 3:55 p.m.
    Yes, there is a problem with the language; so it should just be corrected, so that we get the - Hon Member for Akropong.
    Mr Boafo 4:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, a careful
    study of the proposed amendment may lead us to allocation of hundred per cent. That is number one; number two, it puts the provisions in clause 24 into disarray. The earmarking of 70 per cent gives us some certainty about the allocations to Heritage and Stabilisation Funds. But if you say “not less than (70) seventy per cent”, it is not certain how much we are going to allocate to Heritage and Stabilisatioin Funds.
    Mr Speaker, I am afraid if we leave it
    Mr Haruna Iddrisu 4:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I rise to urge Hon Ato Forson to reconsider his amendment and that I share the view which has just been expressed by the Hon Member for Akropong to say “not less than” will rather be too open.
    But Mr Speaker, with your leave and indulgence, I will further seek to amend it to read:
    “the Annual Budget Funding from petroleum revenue shall be seventy (70) per cent of the benchmark revenue”.
    If we can have such a rendition, it will capture our thoughts and we anticipate that the thirty (30) per cent is what would deal with other concerns of Stabilisation and Heritage Funds. So in that view, if you would agree to that, we should further amend his request to read
    “seventy (70) per cent of benchmark revenue which will be part of the Budget proceeds”.
    Mr Forson 4:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, on this note, I support the amendment proposed by my Senior Colleague.
    Thank you.
    Mr Second Deputy Speaker 4:05 p.m.
    Let us get the language right. Are we using “not more than seventy (70) per cent” or you are saying “shall be seventy (70) per cent”? They mean different things.
    Hon Members, are we saying “it shall not be more than seventy (70) per cent” or it shall be “up to seventy (70) per cent” or we are saying “should be seventy (70) per cent”? They are separate things; let us get the language clear.
    Yes, Hon Chairman, and then Hon Deputy Minority Leader.
    Mr Avedzi 4:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I think the amendment proposed by the Hon Minister for Communications is that, we have a specific figure, not a range, so it should have been set at seventy (70) per cent of the benchmark revenue. We will be definite on the figure, at seventy (70) per cent.
    Mr Dery 4:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I think the better rendition should read: “shall not be more than seventy (70) per cent”.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 4:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I think Hon Members should be very cautious in this Bill that we are passing. Mr Speaker, we are not making this Bill for today or tomorrow. It could go to maybe, 20, 30 and 40, 50 years from now. Chances are that we may have further discoveries and what we may have in the basket will be so huge. I hear the Hon Moses Asaga saying that we can always come here.
    Mr Speaker, when you are making a Bill, you apply critical thinking and anticipate what may happen tomorrow. So if you say that we can use up to seventy (70) per cent, today, tomorrow, the day after tomorrow, when we may not have enough, we can get to the maximum amplitude which is seventy (70) per cent. If you have more revenue in the kitty, then maybe, you can come to 69, 65, 60 depending on what we have on the table.
    But to say that it should be cast in iron, that it should always be seventy (70) per cent, Mr Speaker, I do not understand that and I believe the Hon Member for Tamale South who proffered the amendment realizes that he should have used the language of “not exceeding seventy (70) per cent or up to seventy (70)” because I saw him signalling that he agrees with the current rendition.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:05 p.m.
    Hon Members, the Hon Members who proposed the Bill brought fifty (50) to seventy (70) per cent, so if you are saying that not more than seventy, what is the difference? What really is the difference? So why can you not use that phraseology; what is our problem? Why should we waste so much time; we do not have time. So I think that the point being made by the Hon Minority Leader, we may have to consider it seriously; so you can go seventy (70) and below. We are talking about seventy (70) and below.
    Mr Asaga 4:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I think I agree that we are making the law for the future but we should also know that there is the intention that the Heritage Fund and the Stabilisation Fund are taking thirty (30) per cent and therefore, the remainder is the seventy (70) per cent. So we are saying that what would go into the Consolidated Fund should be seventy (70) per cent and when people are saying that in the future there can be over production -- these are percentages, so if you have more production, there will be more money into the Heritage Fund. So seventy (70) is the cap for it.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:05 p.m.
    Hon Nabdam, all that is being suggested by the Minority Leader is that, you can take up to seventy (70) but because we are making a law for the future, we should not make it seventy (70), so that next time, if we want to reduce it, then you have to come to Parliament to have it re-adjusted. That is the point; any time you want to go below seventy (70), you have to come to Parliament for an amendment. That is the point that he is making.
    Mr Seth Terkpeh 4:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I just want to draw your attention to clause
    19 (4), which says that in any event, this clause will have to be reviewed every three years. So within the next three years, it will have to be reviewed anyway.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:05 p.m.
    Hon Deputy Minister, if it is seventy (70), then the Hon Minister cannot review it. If it is seventy (70), simpliciter; the Hon Minister cannot come and review anything.
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, but not more than seventy (70), is the original intent of what the Hon Deputy Minister for Finance and Economic Planning brought. This is a cleaner way -- so what are we voting on?
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:05 p.m.
    Hon Members, I will put the Question.
    Hon Majority Leader --
    Mr Avoka 4:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, with all due respect, this clause 19 (3) is a bad provision. How can you have a substantive law being amended or reviewed every three years? It must be a Legislative Instrument, if that were so. Otherwise, this law would be subject to mutilation. Every three years, they review it. It goes forward or downward. At least, let us give the ceiling and then we are covered. I think it is a bad law.
    Mr Bagbin 4:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I think the proposal captures the intention of the initiators of the Bill. The intention to give a range to seventy (70), which meant that it could be 50, 60 -- so if you say “not more than seventy (70)”, it is properly captured and I think that that should be it.
    Mr Haruna Iddrisu 4:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I believe that we can have a compromise as a further amendment to let it reflect what the Hon Minister for Water Resources, Works and Housing has stated. Mr Speaker, if you read further to clause 19 (2), it provides that leaving it at not more

    than seventy (70) per cent will capture our true intent because clause 19 (2) says that:

    “The exact percentage of the Benchmark Revenue which shall be adopted as the Annual Budget Funding Amount shall vary from year to year . . .”

    So it means that -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:05 p.m.
    There is an amendment to delete that clause by the Committee. I am not saying it; the Committee has decided to delete it. It is on the Order Paper -
    rose
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:05 p.m.
    Hon Member for Asawase, after you, then the Hon Member for Akropong.
    Alhaji Muntaka 4:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, why we must be firm with the 70 per cent is that we should remember that when we were talking about the Stabilisation and Heritage Funds, we said 30 per cent would be meant for that. What it means is that, when you say, not more than 70 per cent a year where we use 50, then there would be 50 per cent. Meanwhile, you have defined the Stabilisation Fund and the Heritage Fund to be 30 per cent. That is why it is important to be specific, otherwise, we have to go back to state that -- [Interruption.]
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, on a point of order -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:15 p.m.
    Hon Member, I will call you.
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:15 p.m.
    On a point of order.
    Alhaji Muntaka 4:15 p.m.
    Let me finish.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:15 p.m.
    Let us listen to him.
    Alhaji Muntaka 4:15 p.m.
    Just listen to me; you can make your point.
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:15 p.m.
    On a point of order - [Interruption.]
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:15 p.m.
    Hon Member for Old Tafo, you are the Ranking Member, I will definitely call you.
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:15 p.m.
    No, he is saying that we have taken that decision, and I am saying it is misleading. He is misleading this House. This House has not taken a position in respect of 30 per cent.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:15 p.m.
    Hon Member, which part of the Bill are you referring to?
    Alhaji Muntaka 4:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, when we were talking about the Stabilisation and Heritage Funds -- [Interruptions]-- we said that - Mr Speaker, the Ranking Member knows that. At Koforidua, they said it, even though his Government was not there.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:15 p.m.
    Hon
    Member for Asawase, you are making a categorical statement that we said we are allocating 30 per cent for the Heritage and Stabilisation Funds and they are asking you where is that provision?
    Alhaji Muntaka 4:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, when your Committee was even submitting their Report -- [Uproar.]
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:15 p.m.
    Hon Member, where is that provision?
    Alhaji Muntaka 4:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the intent of this clause of the Bill is that 30 per cent was going to be meant for

    Stabilisation and the Heritage Funds. Mr Speaker, even aside that, it is not good to make such an open law where you say, less than 70 per cent. What it means is that, 20 per cent could be used, 30 per cent could be used and 50 per cent could be used. If you say not less than 70 per cent, again, it means that 80 per cent could be used, and 90 per cent could be used. That is what it means.

    It is important that you are specific and that is why we say it should be 70 per cent, so that we know that you are exact, having in mind that clause 19 (3) is saying that every three years, you would come and review the whole law. It is more important to look at it from that angle rather than to leave it open where every year the thing keeps alternating.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:15 p.m.
    Deputy Minority Leader, though I will come to you, let me call the Hon Member for Akropong. He has been on his feet for a long time, then after him you would come.
    Mr Boafo 4:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I think earlier, the impression was created that the Minister would have to come to this House every three years to review the 70 per cent benchmark. But that is not what is provided in the Bill. It is not the rate which is being reviewed every three years. But the percentage within the range determined by the Minister is what you can come to the House for a review every three years. Not that this has to be reviewed every three years.
    Mr Speaker, the second point is that, having regard to what the Hon Member for Asawase (Hon Muntaka) said, we have not come to that portion. But under clause 24, it sought that 30 per cent would be allocated for distribution between Heritage and Stabilisation Funds. Clause 24 says, “ a minimum of 30 per cent,” not 30. So if the Minister determines the range for 60 per cent, then the balance of 40 per cent
    can be apportioned between Heritage and Stabilisation Funds proportionately.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:15 p.m.
    Hon Member for Wenchi, then we have the Deputy Minority Leader.
    Prof. George Yaw Gyan-Baffour 4:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, you know, the issue of whether it should be 70 per cent or something else, means one has to take into consideration the fact that when you are actually using a point estimator, there is no flexibility in what you do. That is why people rather prefer ranges. So it is better to have a range so that it allows flexibility.
    But whether we have 30 per cent for the other funds, it is not known to this Bill. What the Bill says, and Mr Speaker, I quote - the amendment even brought it this way that:
    “The petroleum revenue in excess of the Annual Budget Funding Amount that is what is going into that Fund.”
    So it does not matter where the percentage falls. So if in a year, we have 60 per cent, then the 40 per cent goes into that Fund; if we have 70 per cent, 30 per cent goes into that Fund. So they are not related at all in that form. But the quality of the law should be allowing flexibility so that if in a year, the amount is so huge that we need only 60 per cent for the Annual Budget Funding Amount, we can do that. If we need 70 per cent, we can do that. So I think the flexibility is better and it does not actually come against any part of the law so far.
    Mr Dery 4:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I wanted to remind my Brother, Hon Muntaka that, what we are actually considering now, is the proposed amendment that it should not be more than 70 per cent. That is what we are on now. But he was talking about “not less than,” that is not what we are saying, “not more than 70 per cent”. And then it is left with the Ministry, depending on the
    circumstance from year to year to decide. “So not more than 70 per cent”, I think should cover it and it is well within the spirit of the law, so that we can move on.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:15 p.m.
    Hon Members, we have two amendments. One group is saying, “shall be 70 per cent”; another group is saying “not more than 70 per cent”. I thought we could reconcile this position, then I can take the Question.
    Hon Majority Leader, do you have a compromise position?
    Mr Avoka 4:15 p.m.
    Yes, Mr Speaker. We should take “not more than 70 per cent”. I think by consensus, we would take that one. “Not more than 70 per cent”, by consensus.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:15 p.m.
    Very well.
    Question put and amendment agreed to.
    Mr Avedzi 4:15 p.m.
    Mr. Speaker, I beg to move, clause 19, subclause (2), delete.
    Mr Speaker --
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:15 p.m.
    Hon Member, in view of this amendment that has been carried, do you think that amendment, still stands?
    Mr Avedzi 4:15 p.m.
    Yes, Mr Speaker, it still stands.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:15 p.m.
    How does it stand?
    Mr Avedzi 4:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, because we have a range now from 0 to 70 per cent -- the exact percentage -- All right, in view of the amendment, it means that the deletion of this should not be done. So we have to step this one down.
    Mr Boafo 4:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, in view of the deletion of clause 19 (2), I am abandoning my proposed amendment.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:25 p.m.
    You are moving it or you are withdrawing it?
    Mr Boafo 4:25 p.m.
    I am withdrawing it.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:25 p.m.
    Very well. Thank you.
    Hon Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu -- Hon Minority Leader.
    Dr Anthony A. Osei 4:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, he said I should proffer this amendment. So it would be a slight variation of the current one. His amendment is, as it is showing in the Order Paper, just so that it captures appropriately the clause (2).
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:25 p.m.
    Hon Member, you should have drawn our attention to that amendment earlier, when we came to subclause (2), because you have drawn that you were also seeking to amend subclause (2) -
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the amendment only sharpens the language as it is; it does not change the substance -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:25 p.m.
    Hon Member, the rules say that we cannot take an amendment which is inconsistent with the one that the House has agreed to. So we have just agreed to subclause (2) of clause 19 as it is in the Bill. Now, you want to delete what we have just agreed to.
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, we are not deleting it; if you can just see the change that is being reflected. It is not a deletion; it is a better rendition -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:25 p.m.
    Hon Member, that is what I have there.
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:25 p.m.
    It is not inconsistent with it at all, if you read it carefully. He
    needs to amend the Petroleum Develop- ment Fund to the Annual Budget Funding Amount, and the language is the same, instead of the economic absorptive capacity, it is just saying that “absorptive capacity of the economy”, just better rendition. But the amendment he has, we should change the Petroleum Develop- ment Fund to the Annual Budgeting Funding Amount. Otherwise, it is just a better rendition.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:25 p.m.
    Sorry, there is a problem in the Bill, that is why we have that disagreement. We have two sub- clause (2) in the Bill. So that is where the problem is coming from.
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:25 p.m.
    I am referring to the first one, that his amendment is simply a better rendition of what the House has agreed to.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:25 p.m.
    Hon Member for Old-Tafo, it should be “Annual Budget -”
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:25 p.m.
    That is what I was saying, that instead of Petroleum Development Fund, it should be to the Annual Budget Funding Amount, so that it is -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:25 p.m.
    Hon Chairman, have you got the import of the amendment?
    Mr Avedzi 4:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I think it is just the subclause that is recaptured here to have a clearer understanding. And with the proposed correction that in place of the Petroleum Development Fund, we would put the Annual Budget Funding Amount; we should carry it.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:25 p.m.
    Hon Member, have you seen the amendment of the Hon Minority Leader; have you read the amendment of the Hon Minority Leader well? [Pause.] Chairman, have you read the amendment of the Hon Minority Leader? Have you looked at the
    amendment? I just want to make sure that it captures the sense of the House before I put the Question. It is not the same.
    Mr Avedzi 4:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the original clause says that the exact percentage of the benchmark revenue which shall be adopted as the Annual Budget Funding Amount shall vary from year to year, guided by a medium-term development strategy, aligned with the long-term development framework. The economic absorptive capacity and the need for prudent, macroeconomic management.
    Now, the proposed amendment is saying that the exact percentage of the benchmark revenue which shall be allocated annually to the Annual Budget Funding Amount shall be guided by a medium-term strategy, aligned with a long term national development plan, the absorptive capacity of the economy and the need for a prudent macroeconomic management. The latter part of it is where there are some changes. There are some changes there.
    Mr Haruna Iddrisu 4:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I believe that we should persuade Hon Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu on the basis of our earlier decision in clause 17. There is no Petroleum Development Fund as he was earlier proposing -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:25 p.m.
    They have changed that one.
    Mr H. Iddrisu 4:25 p.m.
    So we should maintain the original rendition of (2) under clause 19 and then you can put the Question.
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, if the Hon Minister for Communications can advert his mind to the proposal that is being offered, I think he would see the rationale in it. If you look at the current one, it says: “shall vary year from year.” Year from year, there is an obligation. You need flexibility if you have a medium- term plan that is aligned with the long- term development plan, so that whatever
    Alhaji Pelpuo 4:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, under normal circumstance, this amendment would stand because it is very detailed, except that it might not be necessary because of the fact that a budget process takes into consideration the medium-term strategy, the long-term strategy, which is the national development plan. All those issues that are mentioned here are in consideration of a budget process.
    You cannot have a budget that stands alone; you have a long-term plan; it is not taken into consideration; you have a medium-term plan. The budget is not taken into consideration. So all these things are part of the process of doing a budget. So you do not need to mention them in a law.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:25 p.m.
    Hon Members, if you do not have the medium- term development plan, then you have a problem -- the new amendment standing in the name of the Hon Minority Leader. That is the import of the amendment. Look at it very well.
    Yes, Hon Deputy Minority Leader.
    Mr Dery 4:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the point is that if you look at the present rendition, it also alludes to a medium-term development strategy; it alludes to that. But this present rendition is an improvement. You would recall that when we were dealing with clause 1, we said that: “shall not be more than 70 per cent”. This clause 2 is saying that “it shall vary from year to year”.
    So it means that if you have 70 per cent this year, you cannot maintain 70 per cent next year. That is what it is saying and therefore, the present rendition is better. It means you can maintain 70 per cent for
    as long as you can, guided by the medium- term, in terms of the long-term plan.
    Now, we in Parliament must ensure that one of the ways to make sure that the money is used properly, that it should not be used in vacuum; it should be used based on the development plan that we have - medium and long-term. So in my opinion, the present rendition is better, so that you can have 70 per cent for the next four years or ten years. But if it says “it shall vary from year to year”, then it means, when you have 70 per cent this year, next year you cannot have 70 per cent.
    Mr Speaker, I think that this rendition is a better one.
    Alhaji Fuseini 4:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the sense of the rendition is good the rationale for the amendment is good, except that the amendment introduces things in contemplation of earlier amendments. And in the amendment, it is talking about long-term development plan, while in the original rendition, we are talking about long-term development framework.
    I think that the rationale for the amendment is good, in the sense that we are saying that this exact percentage shall vary; it is even mandatory. So where we decide to maintain, it becomes difficult with our relating the provisions of this law, except that the amendment introduces two new key things. It introduces the Petroleum Development Fund. So that would require another amendment -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:25 p.m.
    We have deleted that one - That is -- result of a previous amendment.
    Alhaji Fuseini 4:35 p.m.
    And then I will further propose that Long-Term National Development Plan be changed to Long- Term National Development Framework, consistent with the original.
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, there is no difficulty with that as well as we understand. I think it is fair. It is a long- term development framework and I do not see any problem there.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:35 p.m.
    Hon Member for Amenfi East.
    Mr J. B. Aidoo 4:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I have difficulty with this amendment. Mr Speaker, the amendment would have situated itself better if the original rendition in clause19 had been upheld. Because clause 19 is talking about a range from 50 to 70 per cent. [Interruptions.]
    In the case of the original rendition of clause 19, 50 per cent was the minimum, the lower level and 70 was the cap. So that you could take a point within the 50 per cent and then the 70 per cent but now the lower level has been removed. It is now zero and that is why this amendment becomes difficult. It is now difficult to let it stand. Mr Speaker, it is difficult, in the sense that now, there is no range.
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:35 p.m.
    The range is between zero and 70 per cent; how can my good Friend say it is a wider range, So, to say that there is no range is trying to mislead this House.
    Mr J. B. Aidoo 4:35 p.m.
    It is up to -- we are talking of up to 70. Yes, but the point is that the new amendment being proposed is going to affect the 70 per cent. It is intended to affect the 70 per cent. So which one is it affecting? This is the point.
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I do not know -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:35 p.m.
    Hon Member for Old-Tafo, you must catch my eye.
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:35 p.m.
    Sorry.
    rose
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, we have been -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:35 p.m.
    The Hon Member for Manhyia, he has been on his feet for a while.
    Dr Prempeh 4:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I think we have come to a sensible agreement on the floor. We have come to an agreement where framework or plan is the same. Mr Speaker, I hope you can put the Question now because anybody who says 0 up to 70 per cent is not a range but 50 per cent to 70 per cent is a range -- Mr Speaker, please, put the Question let us make progress.
    Mr Bagbin 4:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, to start with, framework and plan are not the same; they are not the same at all. Framework -- we have a legal framework; it is different from a plan; a legal plan. They are very different; the two are not the same.
    But I think the rendition that is proposed in the amendment by the Hon Minority Leader is acceptable. I think that is the proper way of capturing the true intention of the initiators of the Bill.
    Mr Speaker, what is being proposed here is that once we have given the range from 0 to 70 per cent each year that they propose to fix a percentage, they should take the following into consideration in deciding whether it should be 60 per cent, it should be 20 per cent, or it should be 70 per cent; this should be the guide.
    Look at our medium-term as aligned to the long-term and look at the absorptive capacity of the year and the other prudent microeconomic management indicators and fix the percentage. So I think that is correct and that is the right thing that should be accepted by this House.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:35 p.m.
    So are you going to use the long-term National Development Plan or framework?
    Mr Bagbin 4:35 p.m.
    No, National Development
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:35 p.m.
    Very well. The Hon Minority Leader has no objection.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 4:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I thought this one, in talking about framework, we were talking about the plan, because the National Development Planning Commission task is not to propose a framework but a plan for us. But if the attitude of Members herein present is that it is framework, I do not mind.
    rose
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:35 p.m.
    Wait, Hon Deputy Majority Leader, I have called you earlier.
    Deputy Minister for Education.
    Dr Joseph S. Annan 4:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I think the issue of framework is important to establish because the long-term vision and the long-term framework are more or less the same but the plan is usually a more detailed affair.
    But Mr Speaker, what I really wanted to underscore was, in going back to the original clause 19 (2). When I read that, I thought that it was quite appropriate if only one change could be made. That is the exact percentage of the benchmark revenue which shall be adopted as the Annual Budget Funding Amount.
    Instead of “shall”, we should have put “may”. If we change that to “may vary from year to year”, I think it would satisfy the concerns of that compulsory 70 per cent or otherwise. If we could do that, then we could continue with the existing wording in the original clause 19 (2).
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, with respect to my Hon Colleagues, I think when we go a long way to make consensus and people -- I do not know whether here
    or not want to send us back, they create conditions, which we do not want to be here anymore. Everybody has accepted the amendment; we are moving forward; now, you are going back to offer an amendment to derail the consensus.
    Mr Speaker, I plead with my Hon Colleague.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:35 p.m.
    Hon Member, we are at the Consideration Stage and that is why the Mace is slanting. The rules are relaxed; that is why you have spoken more than ten times to a particular subclause. So if he comes and thinks that that is his view, it is not in breach of any rule. At the end of the day, if the Majority thinks that what -
    Mr Dery 4:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I agree that we can speak more than once but we should try and make progress. If you look at clause 2 (2), the second 2, it tells you for each fiscal year, the percentage of the benchmark revenue allocated for spending shall be approved by Parliament as part of the national budgetary process. Mr Speaker, so “shall” does not cause any problem at all.
    Mr Speaker, we got to a stage where the mover of this amendment had said that he did not mind if we replaced “plan” with “framework”. So once we replace those two, I think we should make progress.
    We are not Sitting this late just to indulge in semantics. We are staying here late to make progress. And if we have reached a stage that we should move on, I think we should move on. Change to “framework”; let us take a vote and move on, so that we achieve something today.
    Mr Terkpeh 4:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I think that once the proposer of the amendment has agreed to “framework”, clause 19 (2) is broad in terms of policy and that is why it even talks about prudent microeconomic management where there are not specific indicators to guide it.
    Mr Speaker, if you go to clause 22 (3), there, it talks about the plan when it comes to the time of allocation and it says in the absence of that plan, then it proposes - so I think that -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:45 p.m.
    Hon Deputy Minister for Finance and Economic Planning, do you have a medium-term strategy? Do you have it? [Pause.] I just want to know.
    Mr Terkpeh 4:45 p.m.
    As a requirement, yes.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:45 p.m.
    No, do you have it? Because the amendment by the Hon Minority Leader, if you do not have it, you cannot do any percentage here because that is going to be the guide. If you do not have it, yes -- “shall be the guide”; “shall be the guide”. So if you do not have it -
    Mr Terkpeh 4:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I am not disagreeing with the Hon Minority Leader.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:45 p.m.
    I am also not disagreeing with the Hon Minority Leader.
    Mr Terkpeh 4:45 p.m.
    Yes, but what I am saying is that -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:45 p.m.
    I am only asking you a question.
    Mr Terkpeh 4:45 p.m.
    Yes, but the specific answer to the question is that -- I am saying that even where it does not exist, clause 22 takes care of what should be done.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:45 p.m.
    Hon Deputy Minister, if you look at the amendments and if you do not have the
    “shall”, now is qualifying “the medium- term”. If you do not have the guide, you cannot bring the percentage to be spent in a particular year. That is the import of the amendment.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 4:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, with respect to the Chair, this kind of leading questions and so on, it is really not helping us - yes. Mr Speaker, you take part in the debate by throwing these leading questions and -- Mr Speaker, these things are not necessary, with respect to the Chair. In any event, what is the language in this? The language is that we should be guided by a medium-term development strategy.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:45 p.m.
    The difference is that the “shall” in the first one is qualifying the “vary” - That is the difference; you are asking me what is the difference?
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 4:45 p.m.
    What kind
    of thing is this?
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:45 p.m.
    You are asking me for the difference and I am telling you the difference -
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 4:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, if you are tired about being in the Chair, come to the floor and be in the debate. What kind of thing is this? You are not helping the House at all.
    Mr Avedzi 4:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the Committee, in the Report, actually deleted that particular subclause. But with the sub-clause (1) which we had changed on this floor, has called for re-stating of or considering that particular clause again. So I do not know whether what you did hurts the component of the - [Interruption] - If it does not hurt, then let us just look at it -
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 4:45 p.m.
    It does not hurt me. What you want to do is to further improve the Bill -- just that. Why should

    it hurt me as a person? It does not. I think that by this, it is going to help us. And -
    Mr Avedzi 4:45 p.m.
    No, the point is, Mr Speaker -
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 4:45 p.m.
    Please, I am on the floor.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:45 p.m.
    He is on the floor; the amendment is in his name, so - [Laughter.]
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 4:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker,
    elsewhere, the word “plan” has been used. That is why I brought it forward in place of framework to be consistent with it. And the issue raised by the Hon Member for Nadowli, the Hon Minister for Water Resources, Works and Housing was that we should make a distinction between framework and plan and I said well, I did not mind. But it is to further enrich it so that we are very conscious about what we want to do.
    Mr Speaker, that is it.
    Mr Avedzi 4:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I want to find out from the Hon Minority Leader about the “shall”. If we do not have a medium- term development plan or framework, what happens about the exact percentage that should go into the Annual Budget Funding Amount? Assuming we do not have a medium-term development plan and because we have “shall” here, would it not affect the allocation of that?
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 4:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, what is the Medium-Term Economic Framework (MTEF) about? What is MTEF about if it is not about defining for ourselves the medium-term strategy? What is MTEF about? So we certainly had it; that informs our annual Budget process. So I am surprised the Chairman of the Finance Committee is asking what, if we do not have it.
    Alhaji Sumani Abukari 4:45 p.m.
    At long last,
    thank you very much, Mr Speaker.
    Mr Speaker, I completely support, if I may call it so, the amendment of Dr Annan. Dr Annan's substitution of “may” for “shall” is very important. It is very important because we do not have a medium-term plan, not to talk of a long- term plan. We do not have them. So if we do not have a medium-term plan and we say it shall be guided by the medium- term plan, we are going to be in trouble - [Interruption] - So let us use “may”. So that whether we have a medium-term plan or not -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:45 p.m.
    Hon Member, the “may” there is qualifying variation.
    Alhaji Abukari 4:45 p.m.
    What is it, Mr Speaker? The “may” there is what? I did not hear you, Mr Speaker - [Interruption.]
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:45 p.m.
    Kindly continue.
    Alhaji Abukari 4:45 p.m.
    You made a statement.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:45 p.m.
    No, continue.
    Alhaji Abukari 4:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, so I think that “may” is dependent on whether we have a medium-term plan and a long- term plan or not. If we do not, then it is dangerous for us to say it “shall” be guided by that plan because there is no such plan.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 4:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the Hon Member who just spoke, nobody is talking about medium-term plan; it is medium-term strategy. Can he look at that, please?
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:45 p.m.
    Medium- term development strategy.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 4:45 p.m.
    It is medium- term strategy, not plan.
    Alhaji Fuseini 4:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, we are not talking about a medium-term development plan; nobody is talking about that. In fact, when you look at that clause, the original rendition of that clause, it captures broad policy statements and that is why I propose that long-term development plan be changed to long-term development framework to be consistent with the broad principles contained in the original rendition.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:45 p.m.
    There is no objection to the change.
    Alhaji Fuseini 4:45 p.m.
    So Mr Speaker, I propose that the amendment be read and captured as -
    “The exact percentage of the Benchmark Revenue which shall be allocated annually to the Annual Budget Funding Amount shall be guided by a medium-term strategy aligned with a long-term national development framework, the absorptive capacity of the economy and the need for prudent micro- economic management.”
    Question put and amendment agreed to.
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, you asked the Hon Deputy Minister -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:45 p.m.
    Oh, we have passed that point; let us continue.
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:45 p.m.
    No, no. I am making a point.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:45 p.m.
    No, no, no.
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, please, it is important.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:45 p.m.
    You can come back later, Hon Member.
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, just hear me out. [Interruption.] There is a national medium-term development plan available; there is. Just to answer your question. It is called the Ghana Growth Shared Development Agenda - [Interruption] - it is available, please. It is available, so why are we denying it? The Budget has referred to it -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:45 p.m.
    Hon Member, the Hon Deputy Minister for Finance and Economic Planning has answered the question and his answer is not different from the answer you are giving. So what is the problem?
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:45 p.m.
    No. I do not have any problem. But Mr Speaker, I think you are drawing their minds almost to mislead them. That is my problem -
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:45 p.m.
    Drawing attention to “shall”, almost misled the Hon Chairman. That is the point I want to make. So we plead with you, if you do not want to engage in the debate, we may make further progress.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:45 p.m.
    Hon Members, let us continue. You are out of order. Hon Member for Old-Tafo - [Laughter] - Yes, Hon Kyei-Mensah- Bonsu, you have an amendment there -- [Pause] -- but you were told that we would leave here at 12 midnight - But when the Hon Majority Leader said it, you did not object. He is the Chairman of the Business Committee.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 4:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the Motion is to delete all the rest after
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:55 p.m.
    Hon Minority Leader, I thought that you were going to withdraw that amendment.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 4:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, to withdraw that amendment?
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:55 p.m.
    Yes, I thought you were going to withdraw it.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 4:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, why? It is the second (2); it should have been (3) but it is the second (2) in the -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:55 p.m.
    Because I thought your consolidated national budget theory had been rejected by the House. That is why I thought you would withdraw it.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 4:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, that is not the kernel of the proposal.
    That is why I advised the Chair -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:55 p.m.
    I cannot get what you are doing; that is why -
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 4:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the amendment is in respect of the second (2) and I am saying that we should delete all the words after (4). Indeed, the word “fiscal”, you would agree, has been changed to “financial”. So, it will read:
    “For each financial year, the percentage of the Benchmark Revenue allocated for national development shall be approved by Parliament as part of the national Budget.”
    In which case, the use of the word “consolidated” would be deleted from this. It would not any longer read “consolidated”
    because of what we did earlier.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:55 p.m.
    Hon Minority Leader, can you write the new rendition for me? I want to be very sure. Can you write the new rendition for me?
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I plead with the Hon Minority Leader to make a further amendment. Since the House has decided on the Annual Budget Funding Amount, it may be proper that instead of “National Development” we use the term “Annual Budgetary Funding Amount”, so that we know exactly - Because if we say “National Development”, I do not know what it is for.
    We have been specific by defining that term “National Development” by calling it “Annual Budget Funding Amount” as of now, until we changed our mind. So I think that we should amend the “National Development” to read “Annual Budget Funding Amount” so that we are specific.
    Mr Asaga 4:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I think that the rendition given by Hon Dr Akoto Osei is a more acceptable rendition because we are now using the “Annual Budget Funding Amount” and I think that that is consistent with other clauses that have to do with sending money into the Consolidated Fund. So, I think we would support his amendment.
    Mr Bagbin 4:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I think the amendment is missing the issues raised in this clause. The issue raised in the clause is the percentage - The percentage for each year; how is it going to be approved? And they want that percentage approved as part of the budget process in Parliament. We are not talking about the amount; we are talking about the percentage.

    Now, we are doing it from zero to 70 per cent. A proposal would be made; Parliament has to approve that proposal of the percentage for the year. It is not talking about the amount that should be used for the developments. It talks about 70 per cent? Is it 60 percent? Now, is it going to be approved by Parliament? During what? The Budget process? That is why changing it to the way they have done is more focusing on the amount. That is what is here. We have amended his -
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the reason is that - I agree with him -
    Mr Bagbin 4:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, let us get that one, his amendment.
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, all I am saying is that he should change the term, “National Development” to “Annual Budget Funding Amount”, which we have said is the only one of the things that can be allowed. We have said that the revenue can be used for Annual Budget Funding Amount, Stabilisation Fund or Heritage Amount, so that we have to be consistent. If we start going the “National Develop-ment” - Is paying wages national development? We will bring confusion. So that is the amendment but I agree with him.
    This is because if we do not -- we are saying that we should go back to clause 17. Look at clause 17; it says that disbursements can only go to the Consolidated Fund, Annual Budget Funding Amount, Petroleum Fund, and now, he is bringing a new term known as “National Development”. What is that? It is not defined; it is not known here. So, that is why it is not good to use “National Development Fund”. We can use “Annual Budget Funding Amount”.
    Mr Bagin 4:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the issue is still not clear. Maybe, I have to explain further.
    Usually, when we are dealing with
    GETFund, there is a process of approving the formula. It comes differently from the budget process. Now, this provision is talking about how to approve the percentage for a year -- [Interruptions.] I am talking about (2). It says, the original - I am talking about the original -
    “for each fiscal year, the percentage of the Benchmark Revenue alloca- ted, the percentage for spending shall be approved by Parliament as part of the national budgetary process.”
    It is the process of approval that they want to be part of the budget process, so that we do not need to bring a formula to Parliament for them to approve the percentage. It is different from the amount.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:55 p.m.
    Hon Member for Old Tafo, the “budgetary process” there is very important unless you want to change the “process”, that “budgetary process” there is very, very -
    Mr Dery 4:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the Hon Minister for Water Resources, Works and Housing is focusing so much on the amount. The amount is only there because of the name of the allocation, that portion. Because if you look -- earlier -- and in the first (2) adopted as the Annual Budget Funding Amount, that is the name for it. So, instead of saying “National Development”, it says, look, designate it as this particular amount.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 4:55 p.m.
    Hon Deputy Minority Leader, the Minister for Water Resources, Works and Housing is not against that part. What they are worried about is the process of the approval. So that is what we have to compromise and get -
    Dr A. A. Osei 4:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, we have to advert our minds to the fact that we have chosen the language “Annual Budget
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:05 p.m.
    Hon Member for Old Tafo, that is not his problem. He has agreed to that proposal. What is the only problem is whether we should end at the amendment of the Hon Minority Leader - or end at “national budgetary process”. That is the only question.
    Dr A. A. Osei 5:05 p.m.
    I said it is the “national budgetary process”.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:05 p.m.
    Yes, that is all. Hon Members, let me read the amendment to you. That is the amendment of the Hon Minority Leader -- “For each financial year, the percentage of the bench- mark revenue allocated for annual budget amount -” Hon Minority Leader, you have misled me.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 5:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, if you look at the original, the original - [Interruption.]
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:05 p.m.
    So we are merging “National Development” with the “Annual Budget Funding Amount”, which shall be approved by Parliament as part of the national budgetary process? Hon Members, that is the amendment of the Hon Minority Leader -
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 5:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I think it rather should be the “annual budgetary approval process”. It is the process of approval -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:05 p.m.
    Hon Minority Leader, we have “approval” already there.
    Mr Avedzi 5:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I want this thing to be clear. The amendment proposed -
    Mr Frst Deputy Speaker 5:05 p.m.
    Hon
    Member, the amendment proposed, the new rendition is what I am reading. It is not what has been advertised on the Order Paper.
    Mr Avedzi 5:05 p.m.
    That is what I want to know.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:05 p.m.
    That is why I have asked him to write it so that I can read it to all of you. It reads:
    “For each financial year, the percentage of the Benchmark Revenue allocated for the Annual Budget Funding Amount shall be approved by Parliament as part of the national budgetary process.”
    Question put and amendment agreed to.
    Mr Boafo 5:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I am withdrawing that amendment.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:05 p.m.
    Very well.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 5:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, we are not at claluse 22 yet but clause l9 (3) provides the range of spending -- and let us not forget that we have deleted the word “spending”. Spending allocation determined under subsection (1) shall be reviewed every three years with the first review to occur in 2014. We have also not used development activities.
    But Mr Speaker, as we discussed the other day -- and I believe we have consensus that -- one the remit of application with respect to section 22 is too broad and that Government will be called upon to submit a list of priorities of programme of activities and we are saying that that list of priorities should be reviewed in every three years. That is the spirit captured in 19 (3).
    So the use of the words “development activities”, if you can have more suitable language in place of “development activities”, I believe the proposal then should be:
    The range of development activities which shall be drawn from section 22 of this Act shall be reviewed every three years with the first review to occur before the commencement of 2014 financial year.”
    Alhaji Fuseini 5:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the amendment is misplaced. This amendment is talking about the money that will be drawn from the petroleum account and so when you read it, it is the range of spending allocation from the petroleum account determined under sub-section (1) which is the Annual Budget Funding Amount which shall be set at the range to be reviewed.
    So initially when it was 50 to 70, when we decide which range to use every three years, the amount shall be reviewed; it is not about the activitities. So Mr Speaker, the amendment should not be carried. It should be withdrawn. I pray that the amendment be withdrawn because actually, your suggestion in 22 is to the point but that is not in tandem with clause 19.
    Dr A. A. Osei 5:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I agree with Hon Inusah. I think since we are not at section 22 yet, that is not needed and I think if the Chairman will remember the Committee had made a change that the limit of the spending allocated --I think we changed the “range” to “limit”, if I remember correctly. So he should keep that in mind.
    But I think we are talking about the percentage, the up to 70 per cent. Whatever we decide, we are suggesting that it should be reviewed every three years. I think if the Chairman will remember, the Committee changed the word “range” to “limit”. I think we should bear that in mind.
    Mr Avedzi 5:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I just wanted to agree with the Ranking Member that at the committee level, we changed the “range” to “limit”. So “the limit of the spending allocation determined under sub- section(1),” that should be the correct one.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:05 p.m.
    Hon Member for Akropong?
    Mr Boafo 5:05 p.m.
    I rose to support the argument advanced by the Hon Deputy Minister for Energy that here we are talking about the money and when the Hon Minister comes before the House, he will use the activities to reinforce his argument for the revision.
    Mr Kyei Mensah Bonsu 5:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, why I proposed it was that, in clause 2 above, they were talking about “the allocation year by year”, but now that one is lost - I mean a new amendment has been taken, I believe the new one would do.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:05 p.m.
    So you have withdrawn it?
    Mr Avedzi 5:05 p.m.
    MrSpeaker, so I propose a new amendment to clause 19, subclause (3), line 1, delete “range” and insert “limit”.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:05 p.m.
    Why have you moved your amendment? How have you moved it?
    Mr Avedzi 5:05 p.m.
    I am saying that clause 19 subclause 3, line 1 -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:05 p.m.
    Chairman, there is an amendment there in your name; that is what I am calling you to move.
    Mr Avedzi 5:05 p.m.
    That amendment is actually in the name of Hon Moses Asaga. It is a mistake. But before we come to that, I want to propose this amendment on clause 19 (3).
    Dr A. A. Osei 5:05 p.m.
    Chairman, you cannot propose an amendment without the Committee. This was not done

    at the Committee. The Committee's amendments are here.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:05 p.m.
    He said they are in the name of Hon Moses Asaga.
    Mr Avedzi 5:05 p.m.
    Hon Dr Osei, you just said that the Committee members agreed on changing the “range” to “limit”. That is what I am doing. Unless you oppose it, then we maintain the “range”.
    Dr A. A. Osei 5:05 p.m.
    We changed the “limit” and we moved out “determine” -- That is why I said we should refer back to what we actually did. I was asking you to go back to what the minutes say, so that you will get the whole thing, because we cancelled the word “determined” also.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:15 p.m.
    The Table Office should ensure that amendments standing in the name of individuals are properly captured.
    Chairman of the Committee, what amendment were you trying to move on subclause (3)? Are you still moving it?
    Mr Avedzi 5:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I beg to move, clause 19, subclause (3), line 1, delete “range” and insert “limit”. So the sub-clause will read as follows:
    “The limit of the spending allocation determined under subsection (1) shall be reviewed every three years with the first review to occur in
    2014.”
    Dr A. A. Osei 5:15 p.m.
    Chairman of the Committee, what I was saying was that, I think the Committee also removed the word “determined” and left it at “The limit of the spending --”
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:15 p.m.
    Hon Members, I do not have the amendments that the Chairman and the Ranking Member are talking about. But in order to help me, let me have the rendition before
    me, so that I will be very clear exactly what we are doing.
    Dr A. A. Osei 5:15 p.m.
    The Clerks-at-the- Table should be able to give you the joint Report of the Committee, which we are also trying to -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:15 p.m.
    Chairman, let me have the rendition.
    Mr Avedzi 5:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I beg to move, clause 19, subclause (3), line 1, delete “range” -- [Interruption.]
    Mr Bagbin 5:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, on a point of order.
    Mr Speaker, the words of a Statute, each word is very important. Therefore, in using words in a Statute, you talk about definitions. You cannot be using different words - range, limit, et cetera -- clause 19 (1) was talking about a set within the range of 50 to 70 per cent. That is what it was talking about. That is why in subclause (3) they are using the range now; it has been changed in subclause (1), so there is now no use of the word “range”. It is not there. They are deleting the “range” here and they are bringing the word “limit”. They are introducing another word “limit”.
    There is no limit being talked about anywhere in the Statute. What is talked about in clause 19 (1) is the Annual Budget Funding Amount. So if we want to talk about that one, it shall be determined under subsection (1) every three years, let us say so. But the use of different words - limits, range, in the Interpretation, it will create problems.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:15 p.m.
    Hon Members, let me get the new rendition so that I will be clear what Question to propose, so that we do not run into difficulties. This Bill itself is very -
    Mr Kobina T. Hammond 5:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I entirely agree with the Hon Minister for Water Resources, Works and
    Housing.
    Mr Speaker, there is a fundamental problem in what we are doing. And as you can see, he has just identified one. In the rush to get this thing done, we are just going on introducing phrases, lines and chapters.
    Mr Speaker, I think the idea had already been introduced in this House that to be able to go through 200 or so amendments, we will not have the necessary time. Mr Speaker, why is it not being impressed on the Leader of the House to get the Government to withdraw this thing, so that we can just sit down sometime after this and go through everything properly?
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:15 p.m.
    Hon K. T. Hammond, you are out of order.
    Alhaji Fuseini 5:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, in line with the amendment proposed by the Hon Minister for Water Resources, Works and Housing, I think that there is no need for “limit” and there is no need for “range”. What is needed is to say in subclause (3) as follows:
    “The spending allocation deter- mined under subsection (1) shall be reviewed every three years.”
    This is because we have set an upper limit in subsection (1) now by the amendment and we have left it to Parliament to determine the amount. So, any amount so determined by Parliament shall be reviewed every three years. That is what we want to capture in clause 3. And I think that the amendment should be to delete from subclause (3), the words “range of the…” so that it will now read as follows:
    “ T h e s p e n d i n g a l l o c a t i o n determined under subsection (1) shall be reviewed every three years for the first review to occur in 2014.”
    Dr A. A. Osei 5:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I do not
    have any objection to this amendment but there is a problem that we are ignoring. The Committee gave a report to this House and the Committee had its own amendments and they should be on the Order Paper so that they can be amended. But here we are -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:15 p.m.
    Hon Member for Old Tafo, you are the Ranking Member of the Committee, if you found out that there is a particular amendment in the name of the Committee is missing, it is your duty to make sure that it is put there.
    Dr A. A. Osei 5:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I am
    bringing this to your attention because we have done that for the last -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:15 p.m.
    Hon Member, I deal with what is on the Order Paper.
    Dr A. A. Osei 5:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, but the Order Paper is misleading us and I am drawing that to your attention because we have done so for lots of other amendments. We are completly ignoring what this House has already accepted as the Report and that is why I told the Chairman that - It is here. The Chairman's word “range” was changed to “limit” and in line 1, delete the word “determine”. So, I was drawing the Chairman's attention to it and that is what I was doing.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:15 p.m.
    Hon Ranking Member, I do not have that document before me here. The rules of the House is that you put your amendments on the Order Paper. If for any reason the amendments are missing, it is for the Committee to draw the Chair's attention to them and give him a copy of those amendments.
    Dr A. A. Osei 5:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, that is what I was drawing your attention to. I do not know why it is not here.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:15 p.m.
    Let me have a copy.
    Dr A. A. Osei 5:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I only have one copy. But I thought the Clerk's -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:15 p.m.
    Hon Member, we do not want what happened to the University of Ghana Act to happen again. So I am very strict and I want to be sure. When the amendment is a bit complicated, I want to be sure that I get it and put the Question so that the Hansard and the Table Office can have it properly captured, so that we know what we are doing here. I cannot put a Question on a matter which is not before me.
    Dr A. A. Osei 5:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, may I ask that the Clerks get a copy of both documents that we have - [Inter- ruptions.] If I give it you him, what am I going to look at? He is supposed to be having a copy, it is our job to give it to him. It is here but it is not on the Order Paper.
    Mr Avedzi 5:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I do not know where the Ranking Member is talking from because I hold the Report of the joint Committee here, and on page 13, numbers 28 and 29, these are the two amendments that talked about clause 19. So, I do not know where he is taking that from.
    Dr A. A. Osei 5:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the Chairman of the Committee asked the Attorney-General's Office to prepare -- Judge V. C. R. A. C. Crabbe -- We met and asked them to give us -- [Interruption.]
    Mr Avedzi 5:15 p.m.
    That is not the Committee's Report.
    Dr A. A. Osei 5:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, this House asked us to meet with Leadership to come out with this Paper. It is supposed
    to be in front of this House; it is not of my imagination.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:25 p.m.
    Hon Members, I have been advised by the Table Office that the winnowing took care of some of those amendments. That is why we do not see some of the amendments on the Order Paper. But that does not prevent any Hon Member from moving an amendment. If an Hon Member wants to do so, they should give me a copy of the rendition so that I will know the Question to put. That is all that I am asking for. So, if you have it there, just write the amendment for me.
    Dr A. A. Osei 5:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I am supporting his amendment. I am just bringing something that should alert your attention but I support his amendment.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:25 p.m.
    But the amendment that the Hon Deputy Minister for Energy is proposing - He is not deleting “determine”. Very well.
    Hon Members -
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 5:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, if you do not mind -
    rose
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:25 p.m.
    Hon K.T. Hammond, you have just advocated that they should withdraw the Bill. Why do you want to contribute to a Bill that you think should be withdrawn?
    Mr Hammond 5:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I was trying to amplify the point that I made because we simply -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:25 p.m.
    Hon K. T. Hammond, you are out of order.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 5:25 p.m.
    Mr
    Speaker, the amendment that I earlier proposed, which I have withdrawn, the second part relating to the review provided that the first review is to occur before the commencement of the 2014 financial year. The reason is that the review should come before the Budget of 2014. That is why I said that it should be before the commencement of the 2014 financial year.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:25 p.m.
    Hon
    Minority Leader, you have withdrawn that amendment, so let us make progress. You have withdrawn it, so that somewhere along the line, we can see what work we can do on it.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 5:25 p.m.
    Mr
    Speaker, it is with respect to what we are doing, that is, the subclasue (3) that we are now concerned with, and as a way of further improving the amendment, the Hon Deputy Minister for Energy is proposing that we just have this construction:
    “ T h e s p e n d i n g a l l o c a t i o n determined under subsection (1) shall be reviewed every three years with the first review to occur in
    2014.”
    I am saying that we should further amend that to mean or to capture the sense that the first review is to occur before the commencement of the 2014 financial year because it has to come before the Budget for 2014 is approved, which is done before the commencement of the 2014 financial year. That is the import of the further amendment.
    Alhaji Fuseini 5:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I think that he is right, in the sense that the review will be contained in the Budget Statement that will be presented to this House for the
    2014 financial year.
    So Mr Speaker, I support the further amendment.
    Question put and amendment agreed to.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:25 p.m.
    Then the second leg of the amendment is -
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 5:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I beg to move, clause 19, subclause (3), delete line 3; “in 2014” delete and insert “before the commencement of the 2014 financial year”.
    Question put and amendment agreed to.
    Mr Asaga 5:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I beg to move, clause 19 - add the following new subclause:
    “The Annual Budget Funding Amount may be used as collateral for debts and other liabilities of Government for a period of not more than ten years after the commencement of this Act.”
    Mr Speaker, we already know of the infrastructure gap that we have in this country. The World Bank and develop- ment partners have all alluded to the fact that we need more money to put into infrastructure. This method of using oil revenue or oil reserves is not unique to the proposal that we are making.
    People have been talking of only the bad cases but they will never mention the good ones. There is the good one which is the Brazilian one. Just about three months ago, Brazil was able to collaterise not only their revenue but it was even in an extreme situation their reserves. As a result of this, Brazil was able to raise almost US$70 billion on the international market and this amount is being used for development in Brazil.
    Dr A. A. Osei 5:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, we are
    informed by our history and we should be very careful what to do.
    I want to state on record that anybody in principle is against collaterisation. First of all, I do not know the rationale for choosing 10 years when all governments have a maximum of four (4) years. So I do not know where the rationale for saying “not more than 10 years” -
    We are going to have infrastructural deficits forever. Since the Government
    is minded on collaterisation, what we ought to be asking is, what type of colla- terisation we should be doing? Let us give an example, on the STX. At least, the first 30,000 will not bring any income. So if you collaterise that, what it means is that, you will use all that amount, all of it for that purpose.
    If you default, you have a problem; that is the thing about collateralisation that we have to be careful about. In the event of default -- you have put all your eggs in one basket, you cannot do any other thing. Here in clause 22, you have listed a couple of things, about 20 items that you want to use it for. So if you collateralise on one single project, you have constrained yourself completely: so we should be thinking about a limited collateralisation instead of what is implied here -- 100 per cent collateralisation.
    If we do that, that is where we are going to run into trouble. You want to be able to do other things; if you want roads, you should be able to, on your own, do them without binding yourself. The thing about collateralisation is not when it works; it is when you default. If you have several other things that you want to do, why do you have to tie yourself towards one project? And that is the danger?
    So my suggestion is that instead of thinking about unrestrained colla- teralisation, we should be taking some specific portions -- so that you will be limited, then it gives you room to be able to do the same things that you were doing.
    You know that mortgaging all of it to one project is not the best? I think, as you said, it appears the Government is minded, and I do not have a problem with it. But I think if that is the path it is going to go, the more sensible thing to do is to limit that extent, not 100 per cent; that is dangerous. It does not allow Ghana any room to do anything else. So some foreigners somewhere can determine for
    us what our prices are going to be and that is the danger of what we are doing.
    Each Government, whether it is NPP, CPP, it is only selected for four years. Why do we want to bind somebody, especially if it is collateralisation for a period for ten (10) years when you know that you do not have a mandate of ten (10) years?
    Let us be minded of the fact that when the Government itself went out, Mr Speaker, in this publication, the Government rightly said so, and I agree with them; they went out to seek opinion; that opinion points to a certain direction. Mr Speaker, it is not for want of nothing that in the survey, the majority did not want it. I am saying we should keep that in mind; even those who wanted collateralisation are talking about limitation
    Mr Speaker, if you spent that much time to seek public opinion and then you turn round to say you are going to throw the public opinion out completely, I believe it is not serious policy-making.
    I think to assure the public that we are conscious of their concerns, we must be moving towards limited colla-teralisation. If we completely ignore what the public is saying -- Mr Speaker, the public will be listening to us; we are coming out from election and I do not think it will be wise to ignore that. At least, to assure them that we are conscious of their concerns, we should be thinking about this amendment, to say that we would go from limited collateralisation, which is constrained within the mandate of a specific Government, so that that Government would be accountable for the time that they have been elected.
    Mr Speaker, I want to tell Hon Members
    of both sides of the House, that this is not political, and should not be partisan, and we should be doing what is best for the people of Ghana with our oil. When people stand up and say we will go for it, Mr Speaker, I want them to advert their minds that if they stay there, that they will go for it no matter what, the public will not take us serious.
    So I think that this amendment should be further amended so that the people of Ghana can be assured that we the representatives are taking into account what they believe.
    I thank you.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:35 p.m.
    Hon Members, I will take one each from both sides of the House because we have debated on collateralisation and we have discussed it at clause 5 for a very long time. I do not know what we are going to say now, which we have not said already. But just to refresh our memories as we have done earlier, we will take one from each side of the House and then we will -
    Hon Deputy Minority Leader.
    Mr Dery 5:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the issue of collateralisation might be determined. We are now talking about the conditions of collateralisation and I think that we should take as many views as possible. Especially, as the amendment does not only seek to put a limit, but also puts time as a limit, it puts ten years; so the question is whether ten years is the best limit or percentage to GDP and the rest of them. So please, we need to discuss that.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:35 p.m.
    Hon Members, I will take one from each side of the House. But in the extreme case, I may add one in the more from each side.
    Hon Minister for Water Resources, Works and Housing.
    Mr Bagbin 5:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, clause 5 dealt with “Petroleum Account”; that was
    rose
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:35 p.m.
    Let us listen to the Hon Minister. I will call you after he has spoken.
    Dr A. A. Osei 5:35 p.m.
    On a point of order. It is important that as we debate this, we speak to the facts that we know. Since he is making an allusion to that, he should give us the specifics so that we understand. Let us not make blanket statements because we have to be factual. I do not have any problem with what he is saying but I think, to be fair to all of us, he has to give us the facts of what he is saying.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 5:35 p.m.
    The factual statement is that you pledged the shareholding for that purpose. That is
    a factual statement. If it is wrong, you can draw his attention that that statement is factually incorrect. He has not put a number of years on it, he only made that statement.
    Hon Minister, continue.
    Mr Bagbin 5:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I rose to support the point that he is not against collateralisation, because that is a form of collateralisation. Now, the issue that is being debated is -- [Interruptions.] So Mr Speaker, we are all for collateralisation.
    Now Mr Speaker, I myself asked why ten years? Then, I started debating it within myself and I came to the understanding that once it is usually a four-year term, it meant that it might not be for any particular one government. So it is an objective way of saying that within 10 years. Usually, when you are planning a vision, you use 10, 15, 25. So not to make it a long-term vision, we said 10 years. Within 10 years, you can make a mark in infrastructural development.
    We are, as a nation, being compelled to develop and exploit our oil and gas resources now. Even the infrastructure to do that, is not available. We need as of now, to make sure that we can even defend it, we can protect it, we can secure it. We do not have what it takes to do that. Unless we want the shareholders to come and take the oil on the high seas and go back and we cannot even chase them to bring it back;. So we say within ten years, if we collateralise, we can get the capital to be able to develop. It is not just roads, even aviation had to be developed; it is not just water to get to the people. That is not it. It is not just electricity, the energy that you need but there are other sectors crying for development.
    So if we decide to say 10 years, that, in my opinion, is reasonable. If the good
    people of Ghana decide that tomorrow, you are in government and you do not want collateralisation, you amend the provision. If you want it, you continue. That is it. So we should not split hairs over this.
    I think that this is a good amendment and I support it and I urge Hon Members to do so -- [Hear! Hear!] - because when I read the documentation on the pledging of the shareholding for the US$1 billion worth of crude oil, I knew why, because they had to keep the country going. There was nothing wrong with that. So let us take it objectively and do not let it look like, as some are saying, STX is US$1.5 billion.

    We are aware that the oil deposits are not only at the offshore of the Western Region. We have the Keta Basin, we have the inland -- [Interruptions] - The deposits are there and we are going to exploit them.

    So Mr Speaker, this amendment is well intentioned; this amendment is appropriate; this amendment is reasonable; this amendment is in the best interest of the people -- [Hear! Hear!] This amendment will assist us to develop our country; this amendment should be supported by this House. [Hear! Hear!]
    Mr Hammond 5:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I have come to know that in this House if a Member gets up when another Member is speaking on a point of order, he is allowed to interfere.
    Mr Speaker, the whole idea of my standing up for about fifteen minutes or maybe ten minutes, is to draw the attention of the House to the fact that quite a lot of what the Hon Minister has said, Mr Speaker, with the greatest respect to him, is clearly inaccurate. So all the noise about the collateralisation of the US$1 billion and whatever, Mr Speaker, I do not normally go about asking for people to present evidence and all that.
    On this occasion, I am throwing the challenge to him to table the document that he has to show that we collateralised the oil reserves to the tune of US$1 billion he is talking about. The parties involved and the factual basis for what he has said.
    Completely inaccurate, I throw him the challenge. Tomorrow, Mr Speaker, when we come to this House, we would ask the Hon Minister to present the facts to this House because what he has said is inaccurate.
    There is a document which he may have seen. Mr Speaker, that document did not go through any stage. There was a proposal at a stage -- [Interruptions]-- Now, Hon Members, listen to me, it is very important. Please, listen to me - [Interruptions] - You should listen to me. You should listen to the facts.
    Mr Speaker, at a point in time when the country was buying crude oil at a price of about US$147 a barrel, a decision was - it was not a decision - a discussion was held among some parties whether it would be appropriate in the circumstance of the situation for a brief period over three months if some amount of the oil could be collateralised.
    Mr Speaker, in the process of that discussion, it was agreed that in view of the findings from countries like Nigeria, Venezuela and the same Norway, the discussion that has led to this particular Bill, and in view of the critical findings and what collateralisation had done to the respective economies of those countries, it would be suicidal for Ghana to go by
    Alhaji Fuseini 5:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the amendment proposed by the Chairman of the Committee on Mines and Energy, Mr Moses Asaga, is the right amendment; it is proper in the circumstances. It ties in neatly with the law because the framework for the use of the Petroleum Fund has clearly been identified in the law. You have the Stabilisation Fund, you have the Heritage Fund, and you have the Annual Budget Funding Amount.
    If you look at other provisions in the Bill, you would see clearly that there is an attempt to encumber the Stabilisation Fund and the Heritage Fund. But if you read the whole of clause 19, there is no attempt whatsoever; the original proponents of the Bill did envisage putting fetters on the use of the Annual Budget Funding Amount.
    When you look at the amendment
    again, Mr Speaker -- and that is why I do not see why we are making attempts to suggest that Government is going to collateralise. The amendment is seeking to give a discretion to Government. In the event that Government wants to use the amount in the Annual Budget Funding Amount to secure a loan, it may be permitted to do that. We should not jump to the conclusion that government would do that.
    Thirdly, Mr Speaker, it is not out of place at all. In fact, practice in this House, practice in government, in the previous NDC Government, in the NPP Govern- ment, shows clearly that if you have a budget line item of anticipated revenue to come into the country, to come to Government, and that you can compute that revenue, you are permitted to use that revenue to secure a facility.
    rose
    Alhaji Fuseini 5:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I have seen that Hon Akoto Osei has risen to his feet.
    I am not saying that was collaterali- sation. Mr Speaker, the effect of that was akin to collateralization.
    Mr Speaker, I am further saying that when you look at the building of the Bui Dam -- clearly, we have said that we need to build the Bui Dam. We realize that this country is a major producer of cocoa, that every year, we would have highgrade
    cocoa; that we would commit a portion of the cocoa to support the building of the Bui Dam. That is collateralisation, that is using part of the revenue that we would derive from cocoa.
    Why do we collateralise at all? Why do we go a borrowing? Because we appreciate an immediate pressing, compelling problem. We do not have the resources to deal with the immediate compelling pressing problem. But we anticipate that we would have revenue in due course. So we go to people who have the money and who are willing to give it to us, to tell them to give us the money for us to develop our country.
    Mr Speaker, I crave your indulgence to invite all the Members of this House to vote overwhelmingly for this amendment. In doing so, we would be sending a message to the present Government and to future governments that we would permit them to collateralise, but in doing so, we would monitor their activities.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 5:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, when lawyers want to turn into economists overnight, that is the path they tread. And when lawyers again turn themselves into geophysicists, then of course, you know the path that the Hon Minister for Water Resources, Works and Housing also did tread.
    But Mr Speaker, I think the amendment proposed by the Hon Member for Nabdam, (Mr Moses Asaga), who is the Chairman of the Committee on Energy is in itself inconsistent with what we did in clause 5. Mr Speaker, the provision of clause 5, which was not amended -- I am talking about the amendment that was proposed.
    Mr Speaker, the language, is that besides the Heritage and the Stabilisation, we can now use the revenue to provide or
    to serve as collateral for debts, guarantees, commitments or other liabilities of any entity. That is what it says; that is the language there.
    Now we are saying that the collateral is only for Government. That is why I am saying that it is inconsistent with the provision in clause 5. Yes, what we did in clause 5, the amendment proposed by the Hon Member, the Chairman is inconsistent, whereas -- I have explained, if he were listening -- [Interruption] -- I am not going to go there. - [Laughter.] When you have finished conversing, I should now explain again, perhaps, in diagrams to you?
    Mr Speaker, the provision is that we are going to let the receipts serve as collateral for debts, for guarantees, commitments or other liabilities of any entity. That is what is in clause 5. Now, he comes back to say, no, we should limit the collateral to only governments, not to other entity. By what he has said, even though in clause 5 we are saying that it should go to - [Interruption.] What is a different account? Have you read what is there? Mr Speaker, that is the first thing.
    The second thing is, he goes on to say that the collateralization as the Hon Member said the other day, does not affect Stabilisation and Heritage. I told him that he had it wrong, to the extent that if there were any shortfall in the funding amount, you would go into the Stabilisation to beef it up. You cannot say that the Stabilisation Fund is not encumbered, because if there is a shortfall, you would go there to take money to make up for it. So it is not totally unencumbered. But Mr Speaker, that is not the crucial thing. The amendment proposes collateralisation for a period of 10 years.
    Mr Speaker, what does the Hon Member mean by a period of 10 years? I think he should explain further to us. Does he mean collateralisation for anticipated revenue for ten years? Is that what he means or that we can do collateralisation
    Mr Bagbin 6:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the Hon Minority Leader is imputing some motives to my submissions which may be improper, listening to him.
    Yes, I did not want to go direct; he said: “We know where he is coming from. He is defending it because he has signed STX” - He is imputing motives that I think are not proper. He is saying that I am aware that the money is more than US$1.5 billion, it is not true. It is US$1.5 billion; Whatever - [Interruption.] Which EPC? It is there; you have copies in Parliament. It is public document; it is not something hidden. I do not do things in darkness. [Uproar.] I do not do things in darkness; daylight - [Interruption.]
    Mr Dery 6:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, my Hon Brother says that he does not do things in darkness. Is it true that all the things he does are in broad daylight? I am sure that in the night there are things he does in darkness.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:05 p.m.
    Hon Minister, wind up because he made reference to you and that is why I called you.
    Mr Bagbin 6:05 p.m.
    I did this in clear good faith to support the House to take a decision. When I started, I drew a distinction between clause 5 dealing with Petroleum Account and this one dealing with the Annual Budget Funding Amount. I did that and I stated, “may be used”. That is what is stated. We do not say that Government should use it every year for 10 years. We are saying, “may be used” and therefore, it is being guided by all what the Minority Leader was talking about.
    rose
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:05 p.m.
    Hon Member for Old Tafo, you cannot take a point of order on a point of order.
    Dr A. A. Osei 6:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, he said clause 5 deals with the Petroleum Account. Mr Speaker, that is not true. Clause 5, does not deal with the Petroleum Account. We have amended clause 5.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:05 p.m.
    Petroleum Holding Fund.
    Dr A. A.Osei 6:05 p.m.
    And the excess amount of the Annual Budget Funding --We have to talk about the proper thing we did.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:05 p.m.
    Hon Members, what are we really quarreling over? Because if you look at the amendment in clause 5, when the Hon Minority Leader raised the issue, I went for the decision taken by this House. And if you look at it, the import is that, the Ghana Petroleum Funds cannot be used for collateralisation. And the Ghana Petroleum Funds under this Bill are the Heritage Fund and the Stabilisation Fund.
    We have taken that decision except there is the need for me -- I stand to be corrected because of what the Minority Leader did raise. There is a very, very important point raised because if this amendment is inconsistent with what we have agreed on, then it is a very important point of order; then I have to look at it closely and make a determination. So when I looked at this, I realised that the only value that this amendment is adding is the 10 years. Because under clause 5, we say we cannot use the Ghana Petroleum Funds, which by rules of interpretation expressio unius est exclusio alterius; clearly, we can use other funds except those two. So I do not know.
    Hon Minority Leader, continue your submission.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 6:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, to the extent that we mentioned the absorptive capacity of the economy and ensuring prudent microeconomic management, I believe, just stating that
    they can collateralize for ten years, Mr Speaker, would not be in sync with prudent microeconomic management or with the absorptive capacity of the economy, which is why the other day, in the side rooms, the discussion that we had was that we should rather relate it to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
    If you are talking about the absorptive capacity of the economy and prudent microeconomic management, you better look at the GDP and not just say that let us collateralise for 10 years.
    Mr Speaker, if we have to collateralise, then that should be the route to go and not just say that, let us collateralise for 10 years. Mr Speaker, that is my thinking. We could then say that the absorptive capacity of the economy would not allow us to go, maybe, over 100 per cent of GDP or over 70 per cent of GDP. So Mr Speaker, I think that is a wiser way to go; if we want, let us avail ourselves of that course. If we think that we should just use years, that is for this House to decide.
    Mr Speaker, I thank you.
    Question put and amendment agreed to.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 6:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, in view of the earlier decision, the (lxi) would not be pursued.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:05 p.m.
    Thank you very much, Hon Minority Leader. What about the first two amendments? Are you withdrawing the first two amendments? We have two amendments standing in your name there before that of Hon Boafo.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 6:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, yes.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:05 p.m.
    Very well.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 6:05 p.m.
    The other one as well? Subclause (4) as well?
    Mr Boafo 6:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I am withdrawing the amendment.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:05 p.m.
    Very well. All the two amendments.

    Clause 19 as amended orderrd to stand part of the Bill.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:15 p.m.
    Hon Majority Leader, what is your next controversial clause?
    Mr Avoka 6:15 p.m.
    Clause 22.
    Clause 22 - Use of the Annual Budget Funding Amount.
    Mr Avedzi 6:15 p.m.
    Mr. Speaker, I beg to move, clause 22, delete and insert the following:
    “22 (1) The Annual Budget Funding Amount, its use and expenditure is part of the national Budget and shall be subject to the same budgetary processes that are necessary to ensure the efficient
    allocation and monitoring of any use.
    (2) The allocation of the Annual Budget Funding Amount shall be:
    (a) to maximize the rate of economic development
    (b) to promote an equitable distribution of the national wealth and equality among citizens; and
    (c) guided by a medium-term expenditure framework aligned with a long-term national development stra- tegy approved by Parlia- ment.
    (3) Where the long-term national development plan, approved by Parliament, is not in place, the spending of petroleum revenue within the Budget shall give priority to, but not limited to programmes or activities relating to:
    (a) agriculture and food secu- rity;
    (b) health and human resource development;
    (c) physical infrastructure in transportation and tele- communication;
    (d) water and sanitation;
    (e) rural development;
    (f) environmental protection;
    (g) effective management and protection of natural re- sources;
    (h) housing;
    (i) protection of physically hand icapped and d i s - advantaged citizens; and
    (i) the strengthening of the State's institutional capa-city for good governance.
    (4) For any financial year, a minimum of seventy per cent (70%) of the Annual Budget Funding Amount shall be direct towards public investment expenditures consistent with the long-term national develop- ment plan, or with subsection
    (3).”
    Mr Speaker, the purpose of this is to have a proper rendition actually capturing all that we have in clause 22 but to make it clearer. And if we go to clause 22 (4), you will realize that we propose:
    “For any fiscal year, a minimum of seventy per cent of the Annual Budget Funding Amount shall be directed towards public investment expenditures consistent with the long-term national development plan, or with subsection (3).”
    So Mr Speaker, the amendment is that the Annual Budget Funding Amount shall be used and shall be guided by the - long-term management plan. Parliament will approve this list. But out of that, 70 per cent shall be directed towards public investment expenditures.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:15 p.m.
    Chairman of the Committee, previously, when the Hon Minority Leader was using “long- term development plan”, you were talking about “framework”. Now, you are also using “development plan”. So I do not know - “national development strategy”?
    Mr Avedzi 6:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, in the earlier one, we were looking at the broad policy framework but at this point, we are actually allocating the revenue towards expen-diture. That is why we want to
    be guided by the national development plan and in the absence of the national development plan, the list that we have provided here shall be the guide for the use of the money.
    Dr A. A. Osei 6:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I want the Chairman to consider the point that you raised. I think that the same logic that was used earlier -- if we used “plan”, you may be caught in there. If we are using “long-term national development framework”, it would be more acceptable than “plan”, so that we are not caught. For the same reason, we amended clause 19, we should be amending this to “national development framework”. And so I want to suggest that we amend it slightly so that we could be consistent.
    Mr Avedzi 6:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, it does not hurt in any way.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:15 p.m.
    Very well. Hon Members, I am going to -
    Mr Bagbin 6:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I do not know about a long-term national development strategy. Strategy? No, the “national development plan” is what is changed to “framework”. Yes; but up there, 2 (c) talks about:
    “guided by a long-term national development strategy aligned with a medium-term expenditure frame- work . . .”
    Development strategy, long-term - [Interruption] - You have the framework, you have the plan, so the strategy is usually not long-term. Medium-term - Strategies are well tailored to achieve something within a short time, not long. You cannot have long-term development strategy. No, there are medium, not long- term. I do not know about it.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 6:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I believe the words of the Hon Minister are interchanged. The “medium- term” should have come with “strategy”, and “long-term plan” or “framework”.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:25 p.m.
    Chairman, did you get the point that the Hon Minority Leader is making? He is saying that subclause (2) -
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 6:25 p.m.
    And then the last one is to “undertake even balanced development of all regions and every part of each region of the country”. That is the language of the Constitution. So if the Chairman does not mind, we can use the language of the Constitution. It is the only difference. If we want to restate what is contained in (c) which I omitted because I thought we had already captured it, we can still situate it here. But I think the correct thing to do is to capture the language of the Constitution.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:25 p.m.
    Hon Minority Leader, so your amendment is in relation to subclause (2)?
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 6:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, yes, subclause 2(2). And as I said, what he has stated as (c) or the (c) here, I did not repeat because it had earlier been spoken about. But if he wants to bring it for purposes of emphasis, I do not mind, I think we can bring it there. So that that would become a (d).
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:25 p.m.
    The amendment here that the Chairman is moving has to do with subclause (1), subclause (2), subclause (3) and subclause (4). That is the amendment. But the point that you are making relates to -- Hon Minority Leader, your amendment seems to relate to (2) and I want to be very clear on that, to subclause (2).
    Dr A. A. Osei 6:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, since the Hon Minority Leader is talking about sticking to the language of the Constitution, then I think either we come out and use the startling one that says, -- because any slight change may bring interpretations -- because clause 36 (6) states:
    “The State shall afford equality of economic opportunity to all citizens . . .”
    It did not say, “to ensure the wellbeing of all citizens”. So, if you are going to take the language of the Constitution, no, but clause 36 (6) it says:
    “The state shall afford equality of economic opportunity to all citizens
    . . .”
    Alhaji Fuseini 6:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, thank you so very much. I have been looking at the economic objectives of the Constitution on the Directive Principles of State Policy. I am yet to see the provision that Hon Minority Leader is referring to. I have difficulty with clause 22 (1). I think that we have already amended certain parts of the Bill in terms of the spending allocation being consistent with the national budgetary process. So, I thought that clause 22 (a) should read:
    “The Annual Budget Funding Amount, its use and expenditure is part of the national Budget and shall be subject to the same budgetary process.”
    The same budgetary process --because the same budgetary process will ensure efficient allocation and monitoring. So we do not need to repeat that one. We just stop at “budgetary process” and that is it.
    Then in (2), apart from the first typographical mistake, it should start with capital ‘T'. In (c), we have introduced two new ones and I do not think we should do that. I think we should keep the words we have come across earlier -- “medium- term strategy” and “long-term national framework”
    I have been advised that where the national framework has been approved by Parliament, it becomes a national development plan. Where the framework
    presented to Parliament has been approved by this House, it becomes a national development plan. [Inter-ruption] That is a piece of advice but Mr Speaker, if that piece of advice has been wrongly given -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:25 p.m.
    Who told you?
    Alhaji Fuseini 6:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, if that piece of advice has been wrongly given, I think that -- On a serious note, I am proposing a further amendment to clause 22 (1), to delete all the words after “processes” for the clause to read:
    “The Annual Budget Funding Amount, its use and expenditure is part of the national Budget and shall be subject to the same budgetary process.”
    Because the budgetary process has in-built allocation and monitoring. Then -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:25 p.m.
    Hon Deputy Minister, but does it really spoil anything by way of emphasis? Does it take anything from it, if you repeat those words? Does it take anything away?
    Alhaji Fuseini 6:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, it makes it very clumsy. Continue and you will see its clumsiness. It says that:
    “. . . shall be subject to the same budgetary processes that are necessary to ensure the efficient allocation and monitoring of any use.”
    It makes it clumsy.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:25 p.m.
    They want to make sure that the process that you undertake is efficient, it leads to efficiency in allocation of resources.
    Is that the only amendment -- No! Let us take - the thing is very long, so I want us to take them one; by one, it is a very long amendment that the Chairman
    Dr Prempeh 6:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I want to further amend subclause (3) but if we are taking it one by one -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:25 p.m.
    Yes, I think that, let us take it one by one, otherwise, we may miss very important -
    rose
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:25 p.m.
    Why? Is your amendment in subclause (1)?
    Alhaji Muntaka 6:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, if you look at the amendment that I also tabled, it is the same subclause (1) and I am wondering whether we should not be taking them together rather than to struggle to take this one and then come to that one.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 6:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I think I skipped something. For subclause (1), my amendment is to state that:
    “Petroleum Revenue is public funds and its use and expenditure is subject to such budgetary processes as are necessary to ensure official allo- cation, responsible use and effective monitoring of any expenditure.”
    Mr Speaker, I think the purpose for stating subclause (22) (1), that Petroleum Revenue, its use and expenditure shall be part of national Budget, is that it should be regarded as public funds in the first place. And so, I thought that we should use subclause (22)
    (1) to state the fact that “Petroleum Revenue is public funds and its use and expenditure is subject to such budgetary processes as are neces- sary to ensure efficient allocation, responsible use and effective monitoring of any expenditure.”
    So, what I have added is the statement that it is “public funds” because the call
    for its expenditure and use to be subject to the same budgetary process is only because it is public funds. That is what needs to be stated.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:25 p.m.
    Hon Minority Leader, if you say “subject to such budgetary process”, it is a little vague. We should be more specific; we have only one budgetary process, basically which this House undertakes. So, if you say “such budgetary process”, maybe, you can -
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 6:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, what informed my writing “such budgetary process” was because of the fact that I had earlier said that we should have the use of the funds to be held in an account to be called “Petroleum Development Fund”. With its defeat, maybe, you can say “subject to the same budgetary processes”.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:35 p.m.
    Yes.
    Hon Muntaka, move your amendment.
    Alhaji Muntaka 6:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I beg to move -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:35 p.m.
    Hon Member, in view of all the processes that we have passed through, everything will be brought here to this House, the use of the resources and everything. Is it necessary again to deal with the kind of formula you are talking about?
    Alhaji Muntaka 6:35 p.m.
    Yes, Mr Speaker.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:35 p.m.
    In view of the processes we have passed through now, everything has to be brought here for approval, so why are you talking about formula again?
    Alhaji Muntaka 6:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the reason for this is that, yes, you will agree
    with me that budget process is a very cumbersome one, the budget process involves bulky issues. And like I have mentioned during the Second Reading, when it comes and there are three hundred items and you do not agree with twenty, because you largely agree with 280 and the budget formula and the way it is captured; it is so rigid. Sometimes in an attempt to get things changed, you make it very difficult for the Finance and Economic Planning Ministry to accept.
    That is why I am of the view that this particular Fund should be treated like we did treat the HIPC Fund where the items will be categorically stated item by item with emphasis on what we want to do.
    Mr Speaker, I am saying this because if --
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:35 p.m.
    Are you saying that what you have done so far will not lead to the same process? What you have approved so far by bringing even the percentage, by bringing all those things to this House? What is different from what you are proposing?
    Alhaji Muntaka 6:35 p.m.
    Yes, Mr Speaker. Mr Speaker, with what we have even agreed, saying that not less than 70 per cent of the money will go to the Budget, what happens is that after taking the 70 per cent, all that is done is to put it into the Consolidated Fund and then run it to support the Budget. Mr Speaker, you will not be able to track them item by item unless the Minister for Finance and Economic Planning tells you that, oh, this one, it is going to do this or that. But I think that it is only proper that we itemize the activities and bring them to this House for us to approve. In that manner, it only goes to confirm what we ourselves have agreed.
    If you look at clause 2 (1) where we said that these moneys should be put into a designated account at the Bank of Ghana, you will agree with me that any time we are making laws that involve revenue, we do not specifically say that it should go
    into any particular account. But here, in the wisdom of the drafters, they say that it should go into a designated account.
    Mr Speaker, secondly, it also says in clause 22 (3), even though we are yet to get there -
    Dr A. A. Osei 6:35 p.m.
    This House has already decided that the Annual Budget Funding Amount will go into the Consolidated Fund. We have taken care of that. We have taken that decision, so it will go into the Consolidated Fund.
    Alhaji Muntaka 6:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, you will agree with me that when we were running the HIPC Fund, it was always within the general envelop but we always tagged it and made sure of the activities that the HIPC Fund was going to finance before we then approved them as a whole.
    But this House always asked what activities the HIPC Funds were going to be spent on and it had always been provided and that is all I am emphasizing, that in this particular instance, you will not say you will take that money and then go and just put it to support the general Budget.
    Rather, you will bring the activities that you are going to use that money to finance for us as a Parliament to look at , approve it separately from the general budgetary process, just to make sure that first, it increases transparency; secondly, it gives us firm commitment and belief into what we are putting the money into. It also makes it easier for monitoring.
    Mr Speaker, let me cite this example. Currently, when we did pass the Communication Services Tax, all of us will agree, that tax is bringing in a lot of revenue to our country. But can anyone of us point at what it is being used for? We cannot. And if you look at this funding - the revenue coming from the petroleum, Mr Speaker, it is not an extraordinary sum that is coming in. It is just about 30 to 40
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:35 p.m.
    Hon Members, what you are doing are so complicated. For the clause 1, we have so many amendments.
    Hon Minority Leader, in view of the fact that we have agreed to use the term Annual Budget Funding Amount, do you still hold onto your amendment?
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 6:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I thought we were going one, two, three. So one , if we proceed that methodical way --
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:35 p.m.
    Yes, that is also subclause (1). He has also moved his. You have also moved yours but I am only asking you whether you want to do some work in view of the fact that the amount is not the petroleum revenue; we are talking about a particular component
    of the petroleum revenue. Do you want to do some work around that amendment?
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 6:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, we can use the Annual Budget Funding Amount -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:35 p.m.
    It is a public fund?
    rose
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:35 p.m.
    Hon Member for Manhyia, do you have a point of order?
    Dr Prempeh 6:35 p.m.
    Yes, Mr Speaker.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:35 p.m.
    Against whom?
    Dr Prempeh 6:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I did not say a point of order.
    Mr Speaker, I am confused about what is happening now. My Hon Colleague from Asawase has moved an amendment and I want to speak on it. I think that if we go there, depending on whether we vote and we accept it or not, we can go to that one.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:35 p.m.
    Hon Members, they all deal with subclause (1). There are variations of subclause 1, so you have to listen to all the various proponents of the amendments -- Wait. They are three, so I want all of them to be moved. After all of them have been moved, we will hear which one you want to support.
    Dr Prempeh 6:35 p.m.
    No, we will get confused.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:35 p.m.
    Hon Member, that is what the rule says. Why? One will negate the other. If you take the one moved by the Deputy Minister for Energy, if I put it and we agree to it; now, we go and move the other one standing in the name of the Hon Minority Leader --
    Dr Prempeh 6:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, my Hon Colleague has adverted our minds to something very, very paramount here. Mr Speaker, if I read the NDC Manifesto - [Interruptions] - page 94 on what the petroleum resources are going to be used for, it is explicit.
    In fact, in the NDC Manifesto, Mr Speaker, I beg to quote:
    “We will address the challenges of poverty in Ghana through expenditures in priority areas of education, health, rural develop- ment, infrastructure, water and sanitation.”
    Mr Speaker, it is fundamental. Mr Speaker, if we do not go the way the Hon Member for Asawase (Alhaji Muntaka) is proposing, already, 70 per cent of the Consolidated Fund is going into Item 1. [Interruptions.] It is going into Item 1 and by the time we finished with the Single Spine Salary Structure, I do not know the percentage where it will get to as of now.
    Mr Speaker, in this country, it was not long ago that Ghana sold its shares in Ashanti Goldfield Company (AGC), it was consumed by the Budget, not a single project could be identified. Not long ago, Ghana sold its shares in Vodafone, not a single project can we point to, that this is the money we realised from the sale of Vodafone. Not long ago, Ghana sold over four hundred companies -- [Inter- ruptions] -- That is what I am talking about. We have sold over four hundred State organisations --
    Mr Joseph Y. Chireh 6:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, on a point of order. Mr Speaker, the Hon Member who is my Friend is misleading this House and taking us away from the
    Consideration of this clause. Precisely because we do not want the money from the oil revenue to go into the Consolidated Fund. That is why we have a special Bill - [Interruptions] -- and in it, we are deciding what it should be used for. Therefore, he should not raise the issue of Item 1; he cannot use the issue of Item 1.
    We are also saying that specifically, under clause 22, prioritized expenditure should be in line with the Manifesto statement he is making. So, where is Item 1 coming here to devour all this?
    Dr Prempeh 6:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, all that I am saying is that, if we want the money to go into the annual budget formula and the formula that we have agreed in this House, if we do not itemise the projects that we are going to use the money for and the Hon Minister for Finance and Economic Planning does not come to this House to tell us what he is going to use that money for, we stand the chance that 80 to 90 per cent of the money will go into funding Item 1. Is that what we want to do?
    What is the point of this whole Bill if we intend to hand over all the money to the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning? If that is the intent, we should hand over the money to the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning because it is all-knowing and all-righteous.
    Then we do not need to waste hours like we are doing now; we do want to do that. We want the money to be put to a long- term use as the memorandum and as clause 1 is saying. That is why we want sense to prevail; that is why we should invest it in infrastructure, road, railway, transport, water, education, health. But before we can do that, we have to let the Hon Minister come here every year to tell us where he is putting the money.
    Prof. Gyan-Baffour 6:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I think we have almost lost all the chances that we have to come out with a revenue programme that years to come, we can show our people that this is what we have
    Prof. Gyan-Baffour 6:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, when you look at what the Hon Minister for Finance and Economic Planning brought to the House this year, if you ask him now, he will not be able to tell you what is it that he is using it for. But if you tell him to go back and then look at the priority areas, he can go and pick them up and bring you those priority areas that we have in this Bill and then show where the moneys will go.
    But Mr Speaker, the most serious part of the whole issue is that, haphazard development is a development not worth doing at all. It needs to be co-ordinated and the co-ordination can only be done if you have a programme that is brought to this House and we see the linkages among the activities and projects that we have in that programme; we know the synergies, then we approve of it.
    It is not an ad hoc thing where you just put the money in the Consolidated Fund, give it to the Budget and then the Hon Minister for Finance and Economic Planning allocates it over all these 23 sectors and comes back here and tells us that they were in the Budget somewhere.
    Now, he will tell us that they are in the Budget somewhere and they were for these areas, but we will end up -- by next year, we will come back here and he cannot show us any single project that we have used this money for.
    So, I believe very strongly that we should come out - he calls it a formula; yes, bring a formula here that will actually tell us that this money is going to be used for A, B, C, D, E, F, and then let him come and sit down here with somebody to explain to the House and after the approval, then it can be spent.
    Otherwise, we will be talking and talking and then we come back here and

    this money, we cannot find it where it is. As I speak now, the Hon Minister for Finance and Economic Planning is there; he knows about all these things but when you ask him exactly where that 70 per cent is, he cannot tell you because he has spread it all over the place.

    So, Mr Speaker, it is very serious and the last hope that we have in trying to make sure that by the time that the oil is finished, we can show to Ghanaians, to posterity that this money was used for that purpose.

    In that vein, I support that amendment and I urge all Members in the House to also support it.
    Mr Bagbin 6:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I thought we were to take the first amendment proposed by the Chairman to clause 22, subclause (1). And I said that we should look at the heading; the heading talks about the use of the Annual Budget Funding Amount and the proposer tried rewriting what is actually contained in the original Bill, and I thought that it should flow this way:
    “The Annual Budget Funding Amount forms part of the national Budget, its use and expenditure shall be subject to the same budgetary processes.”
    That is how it can flow, but you cannot say that:
    “The Annual Budget Funding Amount, its use and expenditure is part of the national Budget.”
    It should be --
    “…use and expenditure being part of the national Budget.”
    It does sound well. The use is a different thing, expenditure and the rest, it is not a commodity or a component of something. So, if we talk about what it is, we should say as follows:
    “The Annual Budget Funding Amount forms part of the national
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:45 p.m.
    Hon Minister, address the Chair.
    Mr Bagbin 6:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I said “use and expenditure”, in my opinion, it is tautology. [Interruptions.] If you say:
    “. . . its use and expenditure shall be subject to the same budgetary processes --”
    We are talking about our normal budgetary processes.
    If we are able to take that decision, then we can go on to the others. If it is lost, then we take the others. But when they are moving them at the same time, the debate, you do not know which debate to follow, which one to -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:55 p.m.
    Hon Minister, if you do that, then how do you get the others also to express their -- What is the difference between your amendment and the one standing in the name of the Hon Minority Leader -- the same subclause (1)?
    Mr Bagbin 6:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the difference is that the Hon Minority Leader is using the language of the Constitution, which is a bit more general. He said, “petroleum revenue is public fund . . .”
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:55 p.m.
    In fact, he has changed it to “the Annual Budget Funding Amount”.
    Mr Bagbin 6:55 p.m.
    He has now changed it to -- “the Annual Budget Funding Amount is public fund”?
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:55 p.m.
    “. . .
    public fund”.
    Mr Bagbin 6:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, that is general. “. . . and its use and expenditure is subject to such budgetary processes . . .” I think he has amended the -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:55 p.m.
    “. . . it is subject to the same . . .” He has also corrected that one.
    Mr Bagbin 6:55 p.m.
    “... to the same..”?
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:55 p.m.
    Yes. “. . . to the same budgetary processes . . .”
    Mr Bagbin 6:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, so we are using the same language.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:55 p.m.
    Yes. So why would the two of you not put your heads together and get a rendition for me, then I will put the Question?
    Mr Bagbin 6:55 p.m.
    I put the rendition to you.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:55 p.m.
    Put it on paper.
    Mr Bagbin 6:55 p.m.
    “The Annual Budget Funding Amount shall form part of the national Budget and its use and expenditure shall be subject to the same budgetary processes.”
    Mr Speaker, that is all.
    Dr A. A. Osei 6:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I recall that a few years back, when we were dealing with the Highly Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC), your goodself reminded the House about article 179 (2) of the Constitution and with your permission, I want to quote:
    “(2) The estimates of the expen- diture of all public offices and public corporations, other than
    Dr A. A. Osei 6:55 p.m.


    those set up as commercial ventures -

    (a) shall be classified under programmes or acti-vities

    . . .”

    Mr Speaker, if Hon Members will advert their minds to what Hon Muntaka is saying, it is only emphasising article 179 (2) of the Constitution. Clause 179 (2) (a) says,

    “ s h a l l b e c l a s s i f i e d u n d e r programmes and activities . . .”

    And I think he is reminding us that if it is in a formula, it is better; that is all that he is saying. There is nothing threatening about what he is saying.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:55 p.m.
    You can achieve the same without it necessarily being in a formula form.
    Dr A. A. Osei 6:55 p.m.
    Yes, Mr Speaker. He is just saying that -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 6:55 p.m.
    You have to comply with article 179 (2) of the Constitution.
    Dr A. A. Osei 6:55 p.m.
    Yes, Mr Speaker. So I think that people should be careful not to throw away the baby with the bath water. He is reminding us that we have to be bound by the Constitution. In fact, this is the point the Hon Minister is saying. As we speak, we cannot approve the Budget and have a certain item hanging there as, “Amount going to petroleum revenue.” It will be inconsistent with the Constitution.
    So, as we think about the Appropriation Act, we have to advert our minds to the fact that the part available for the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) must be classified under “Programmes and Activities.” The part consistent with the revenue amount must be classified under “Programmes and Activities”.
    The Hon Minister must tell us; so he is just reminding us that, let us be sure
    that what we do is consistent with the Constitution. So I do not see why there is anything threatening to what he is saying.
    So please, we should be careful that we do not get so emotional, that we lose the fact that it is our responsibility to comply with the Constitution. This is because if we approve the Budget as the Hon Minister has brought, without classifying them under programmes and activities, all of us would be violating the Constitution.
    Mr Bagbin 6:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, this is the same language he is talking about. Article 179 (2) of the Constitution is dealing with the Budget and in the Budget, we make classifications. It says there that,
    ”The estimates of the expenditure of all public offices and public corporations, other than those set up as commercial ventures -
    (a) shall be classified under programmes and activities” and they are classified there in the Budget. Article 179 (1) is talking about preparation and laying of Budgets and the (2) is talking about the classifications that should be in the Budget. So what we are simply saying is that, this will be part of the Budget; they will be classified accordingly.
    Dr A. A. Osei 6:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, first of all, as we said, it is the estimates of expenditure. The example I am giving is that, as we speak, we know that approximately about GH¢300 million will come from the petroleum revenue but we do not know what programmes and activities have been classified in the Budget. We know that GH¢262 million coming from that revenue is going to GNPC. We do not know yet what the programmes and activities that will under- girth that GH¢262 million. That is an example I am giving. We have to, before we approve the Budget, know that but the point he is making is that, he is reminding us that that has to be done.
    But right now, the example my Hon Colleague is giving is that, the Hon Minister has presented those estimates.
    The question is, out of the GH¢584 million, what are the programmes and activities that go with the GH¢584 million? No one has told us that yet. No. [Interruption] -- It says, “classified under programmes and activities”.
    So the GH¢584 million that is in the Budget Statement, the estimates and expenditure and revenue, what programmes and activities go with that? Can any Hon Member tell us? He is reminding us that before we approve the Budget, that must be done and I think that is very consistent. You do not put a line and say that GNPC is going to get GH¢262 million. It will be inconsistent with the Constitution.
    Mr Boafo 6:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, while follow the contribution from the Hon Minister for Water Resources, Works and Housing, I would like us to continue to the end, that is referring to the proposed amendment by the Hon Chairman with regard to clause
    22 (1).
    This is because my understanding of the sentence, “following processes” is an internal definition of what is meant by “budgetary processes” here but it is not the entire budgetary process that our attention is being drawn to. But that aspect of the budgetary processes “that are necessary to ensure the efficient allocation and monitoring of any use.”
    It is an extended internal definition of “budgetary processes” and I would urge the Hon Minister to accept the continuation of that provision to the end, so that it will be a guide to the Hon Minister for Finance and Economic Planning.
    When he is coming to the House, he will inform us about the budgetary processes to be exact as to what is necessary for us to look for in his presentation.
    Mr Terkpeh 7:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, a lot has

    The point to be made is, in the debate on the general principles, the Ministry was even questioned as to how we came by the amount that was going into the Budget and we did indicate that. Because the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning had to account for all the revenues coming to the Government, whether or not there is a specific framework for it, we were taking guidance from the Petroleum Revenue Management Bill.

    In the event that the Bill is passed, and there is a change, then the Ministry will come to the House with a supplementary budget.

    Mr Speaker, the point is that, the National Development Plan itself, which is to guide the next phase of major capital infrastructural development, is about to be passed. Secondly, in the absence of which the Petroleum Revenue Manage-ment Bill which had proposed areas in which the expenditure had to be incurred, is not yet precise with respect to the areas in which the expenditure has to be made.

    So it is not that the Ministry does not want to be accountable for the use of the Petroleum Revenue, at the appropriate time, when the appropriate framework is available in terms of the Petroleum Revenue Management Bill and in terms of the National Development Plan, we would definitely provide the details about how the Petroleum Revenue is to be spent.

    Indeed, Mr Speaker, I also did make a point at the Committee and earlier in the contribution that the Petroleum Revenue Management Bill has a specific objective of managing the Petroleum Revenue and it is not a substitute for a sound budgetary practice.

    Mr Speaker, if we do want accountability
    Mr Terkpeh 7:05 p.m.


    for not just budget resources but for all revenue resources; then the direction to go is where we are going in terms of improving the budget classification systems within the framework of the Ghana Integrated Management Information System (GIMIS) projects. It is that that would ensure accountability. Indeed, most of the earmarking that has been done today, it is very difficult as I have been saying, to tell precisely, where these expenditures are.

    So the final point I wish to make also is that, in spending on capital projects in particular, often, you do it through a mix of funds; it is possible that you will do it through concessional financing. It is possible that you would have a mix of funds concessional financing, commercial financing, that includes petroleum revenues as well as our own general funds and therefore, any indication that there must be earmarking similar to the -
    Dr A. A. Osei 7:05 p.m.
    Madam Speaker, I think that what my Good Friend is saying is all well and good. But how relevant is it to the amendment that we are debating? People want to know your position on the amendment.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:05 p.m.
    Yes, that is precisely what we want to know. I want to put the Question, so wind up.
    Mr Terkpeh 7:05 p.m.
    The position is that, the earmarking in which the Hon Member is referring to in the context of the District Assemblies Common Fund and National Health Insurance Scheme, these are funds that are spent outside the framework of the Budget. This is going into the Consolidated Fund and I am saying that the direction for accountability is in strengthening the accountability mechanism for the Budget itself. It does not lie outside it.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:05 p.m.
    Where do you stand? So you are opposed to Hon Muntaka's amendment?
    I will take the last one from the Chairman.
    rose
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:05 p.m.
    Hon Member for Manhyia, are you the spokesperson for the Hon Member for Asawase?
    Dr Prempeh 7:05 p.m.
    I am a co-sponsor.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:05 p.m.
    Your name is not on the Order Paper.
    Mr Avedzi 7:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I think that the amendment proposed by the Hon Mohammed-Mubarak Muntaka should not be accepted because the Committee's amendment is sufficient enough. In fact, even subclause (4) says that:
    “seventy per cent of the Annual Budget Funding Amount should be used towards public investment expenditure.”
    This is be guided by sectors like the Ministry of Food and Agriculture and food security, health and human resource development, physical infrastructure and transportation -- all those things have been set out in the Committee's proposal, So if you are guided by all these things and you are devoting 70 per cent for investment in that sector, it is enough for us to monitor and trace those expen- ditures.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 7:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I think that in principle, I agree with the amendment being proposed by the Hon Member for Asawase. This is because, Mr Speaker, I have proposed a similar amendment, except that I thought it was going to be a new subclause. So if you go to page 24 of the Order Paper, I have submitted an amendment, which
    seems to achieve the same purpose as the Hon Member is canvassing.
    I have stated that in order to maximize the impact of the use of the petroleum revenue, in this case, the Annual Budget Funding Amount --
    “the Hon Minister shall in submitting his programme of activities, prioritize in not more than four areas as defined in subsection (3) of this section and the programme shall be reviewed every third year provided that in the event of a national crisis, in an area that is not covered in the programme, the Hon Minister may make a special request to Parliament for a release of revenue.”
    Mr Speaker, so the sense is the same as the Hon Member is indicating. I do not know whether we may take it at this point, maybe, relocate it elsewhere. I felt that if it is relocated as may be clause 4 or a new addition, I think that that will give it much more effect. Otherwise, I believe the principle, I understand.
    Mr Speaker, when we were talking about the remit of application and when I proposed the need for the Petroleum Development Fund, Mr Speaker, Hon Colleagues on the other side of the House said, no, we need to put the money in the Budget Amount, that is the Consolidated Fund, so that when we come there, clause 22, we will have to call for a disaggregation of the areas to apply the funds to. So it is surprising that the same people who argued for the disaggregation and abandoning the earlier position, now are retreating. What is happening in this House? Mr Speaker, are we really speaking to principles?
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:05 p.m.
    The Hon
    Member for Asawase, who made that submission, is still moving his amend- ment.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 7:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, not only him, this is because the Hon Minister for Water Resources, Works and Housing said that he agreed with my position in respect of the Petroleum Development Fund but that we should only change the name. When it came to voting, he voted against it. Can you believe that?
    Mr Speaker, that is where we are, in Ghana's Parliament and strange things cease to be strange things. The Majority Leader is saying that people have changed their minds -- [Laughter.] It is ridiculous under such circumstances to change your mind in five minutes. Mr Speaker, it is dangerous.
    I think that it is a very important matter that he has brought up. You earlier indicated whether we cannot combine the two amendments - the one proposed by the Chairman and the one that I am proposing.
    Mr Speaker, I think that we can easily in respect of paragraph (1) -- I believe we can easily join ranks; this is because the only new introduction apart from recognizing it as “public fund”, the other one is in respect of the words “responsible use”, and that indeed, is in the Title to the Bill and I thought that if it appeared there, it would give it much impetus.
    Mr Speaker, that is the only reason. The word “use” as appearing in the
    construction offered by the Chairman, I thought it was a bit ambiguous, that is why I have used the word “expenditure”, that is what it is intended to mean -- That is “monitoring of any use,” it is “monitoring of any expenditure,” that is from the Fund. Otherwise, it is about the same. So if he does not mind, I think I will refrain from the use of the words “petroleum revenue.”
    So we would delete “petroleum
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 7:15 p.m.


    revenue,” and insert --

    “The Annual Budget Funding Amount is public fund and its use and expenditure are subject to the same budgetary processes as are necessary to ensure responsible use and effective monitoring of any expenditure.”

    Mr Speaker, I believe we are on the same wavelength.
    Mr Bagbin 7:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the Hon Minority Leader mentioned me in his submission and I want to make it clear to him that my agreement with him was per incuriam. My attention was not drawn to the provisions of clause 22. When my attention was drawn to that clause, I read it and saw that it was capturing what we wanted to do. That is why I changed my mind. It is not like I was just compelled -- [Interruption.]
    No, I have to; it must be on record. That cannot go without me correcting the impression that I changed my mind because of something else, no. I saw that the points we were making were well covered by clause 22. So that is why in clause 22(1), we have agreed on how that should be phrased, then as we move along, we can capture the rest. I do not know why this unfair attack.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 7:15 p.m.
    What is unfair about it? I only said that you changed your mind.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:15 p.m.
    Hon Members, I am going to put the Question. Under the rules, unless there is consensus, I have to start with the last amendment first and that last amendment stands in the name of the Hon Minister for Water Resources, Works and Housing, which is --
    “the Annual Budgetary Funding Amount shall form part of the national budget and its use and expenditure shall be subject to the same budgetary processes.”
    That is the amendment standing in the
    name of the Hon Minister and under the rules, we start with the last amendment. That is why I tried to see whether there could be compromise but now that there is no compromise and we keep on repeating, I think that the best thing to do to resolve the matter is to put the Question now.
    Some Hon Members 7:15 p.m.
    Which one?
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:15 p.m.
    Hon Members, we have all spoken on all these, and the rule says that you start dealing with the last amendment. Look at Standing Order 128 (e). I mean, this is because there is no -- I tried to push to see whether there could be a compromise. None is coming.
    Mr Boafo 7:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I believe in my contribution, I pleaded with the Hon Minister for Water Resources, Works and Housing to accede to the continuation of the amendment to the end without stopping at “processes” and he did not have any objection to that.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:15 p.m.
    He has agreed?
    Hon Minister, have you agreed?
    Mr Bagbin 7:15 p.m.
    That is so.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:15 p.m.
    Very well. Hon Members, the last amendment to the amendment standing in the name of the Hon Minister for Water Resources, Works and Housing supported by the Hon Member for Akropong (Mr Boafo) is that,
    “The Annual Budgetary Funding Amount shall form part of the national budget and its use and expenditure shall be subject to the same Budgetary processes that are necessary to ensure the efficient allocation and monitoring of any use.”
    Mr Avedzi 7:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the last word should not be “use” but “expenditure”?
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:15 p.m.
    “Efficient allocation and expenditure.”
    Mr Avedzi 7:15 p.m.
    Yes.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:15 p.m.
    Very well.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 7:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I think if you would go slowly -- First of all, we are talking about the “Annual Budget Funding Amount”, not “Budgetary Funding Amount”, “the Annual Budget Funding Amount” . And it says it is part of -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:15 p.m.
    “shall form part of . . .”
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 7:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, because of the use of the word “is” subsequently, we would say that it is part of it, in line with how they do drafting. It is part -- [Interruption.] Yes, it is part of it and --
    “it is subject to the same budgetary processes as are necessary to ensure efficient allocation.”
    Number two, “responsible use and effective monitoring of any expenditure.”
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:15 p.m.
    Hon Minority Leader, the amendment is in his name, so if you want me to put the Question on his amendment, then you may have to put your heads together because -
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 7:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, it is about the same thing.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:15 p.m.
    That was what I proposed earlier, whether the two of you can put your - This is because I have realised there is not much difference between the proposal of the two of you. And then Hon Boafo said that we should continue with the “process” to end it. So we should just get that addition to it and then I put the Question.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 7:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I thought when I mentioned the incorporation of “responsible use”,
    drawing from the Title, I thought that was acceptable and the Chairman, I saw nodding profusely that, yes, it should be part of it. That is why I thought maybe, it would not derogate from the sense in what the Minister for Water Resources, Works and Housing is proposing.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:15 p.m.
    Hon Minority Leader, so what do you want to add after “budgetary processes”? Dictate it to me and let me get it very clearly. This is because he has ended there and Hon Boafo said we should continue and he has accepted it. What exactly should we add? So Hon Minority Leader, give me the rendition, that is, after “budget processes”.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 7:25 p.m.
    After budgetary processes, “as are necessary to ensure -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:25 p.m.
    Take time, I am writing it.
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 7:25 p.m.
    “. . . as are necessary to ensure efficient allocation, responsible use and effective monitoring of any expenditure.” [Interruptions.]
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:25 p.m.
    Hon Members, what again?
    Mr Kan-Dapaah 7:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, sorry; I do not want to add to the confusion, if you like. But we keep using the words “budgetary processes” and I Sit here trying to understand as an accountant what they are talking about when they say “budgetary processes”. I think if the Hon Minister can clarify it for us -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:25 p.m.
    Hon Member, if you get the last addition of the Hon Minority Leader, right from the day the money is approved by this House, up to the point the Public Accounts Committee reports - what is expenditure? What is
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:25 p.m.


    monitoring?
    Dr A. A. Osei 7:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, what he is talking about is budgetary processes and he is saying that, even though he is an accountant, he does not understand it. So he can tell us what it involves. What we are talking about -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:25 p.m.
    Hon Members, I am going to put the Question. Let us make progress; it is past 7.00 o'clock, almost 7.30 p.m. Let us make progress. Hon Members.
    The Annual Budget Funding Amount shall form part of the national Budget and its use and expenditure shall be subject to the same budgetary processes as are necessary to ensure efficient allocation, responsible use and effective monitoring of any expenditure.”
    I wrote down everything, word by word.
    Dr A. A. Osei 7:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I was Sitting behind him. He did not say “shall form part”; he said “is part”. He did not say “shall form”. That is why I said if you were reading -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:25 p.m.
    Well, Hon Members, it is “is part” - if that is what you want. Hon Minister's and then Hon Boafo's and then Hon Minority Leader's amendment. The three put together.
    Question put and amendment agreed to.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:25 p.m.
    Table Office, have you got the rendition? Very well.
    Hon Members, it means that Hon Muntaka's amendment is lost. Let us look at the amendment; that is why I took my time and looked at it, clause -- That is why I said we should take all. If this one has lost, then we move to yours and under the
    rules, we treat it as we treat an amendment; once one is carried, the other one is lost. And I am referring you to Standing Order 128 (4) (e).
    Hon Member, you may have another opportunity, at the Second Consideration Stage. So let us make progress.
    Hon Members, subclause (2), we have two main amendments; the Chairman's amendment which is the Committee's amendment and then the Hon Minority Leader's amendment. At the end of the debate, I would put the Hon Minority Leader's amendment first; if it is carried, then the Chairman's is lost.

    Chairman, move your amendment and then we move to Hon Muntaka. Hon Muntaka's is consequential, so it is lost.
    Mr Avedzi 7:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I beg to move, clause 22, subclause (2), delete and insert the following:
    “The allocation of the Annual Budget Funding Amount shall be:
    (a) to maximize the rate of Peconomic development;
    (b) to promote an equitable distribution of the national wealth and equality among citizens; and
    (c) guided by a medium-term expenditure framework aligned with the long-term national development stra- tegy approved by Parlia- ment.”
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu Mr Speaker, I thought I had earlier stated a case for this amendment?
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:25 p.m.
    Yes, you did. You wanted to remove paragraph (c); are you removing it?
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 7:25 p.m.
    No. Mr Speaker, what I am saying is that the (c) in the amendment proffered by the Chairman of the Committee. I did not include it. This is because we had earlier considered it in a previous clause. But, maybe, for emphasis, we could still bring it down and I said that we could then add it to what I have proposed and make it (d). But it is about the same thing, except I tried to use the language of the Constitution.
    So if we still want to add that, and I believe we could, because it would not derogate from it. Then we could tag his (c) to mine to make it (d). The rest of (a), (b) and (c), as I said, I tried to reflect the language of the Constitution. So if the Chairman does not object, then we could adopt what I have here as (2) and bring the (c) down here as (d) and then we adopt it.
    But Mr Speaker, of course, it would not read “Petroleum Development Fund” any longer; it would have to be “The Annual Budget Funding Amount”.
    Mr Avedzi 7:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I think we should adopt it by bringing the (c) of the Committee's proposed amendment to that of the Hon Minority Leader's and make it (b). But in his opening sentence, we change the “Petroleum Development Fund” to “Annual Budget Funding Amount”.
    Dr A. A. Osei 7:25 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, if the intent is to have exactly the language in the Constitution, then we have to be slightly careful. Otherwise, in principle - [Interruption.] -- Not exactly. This is because the way (d) has been put, it reads differently from what is in the Constitution and I do not want us to think that promoting equality in economic opportunity means that we are going to ensure wellbeing. But the two are separate.
    Somebody might think that that is why the Constitution says that we should promote economic opportunity and
    therefore, we would be able to ensure the wellbeing of citizens. That is a different clause. So if we want that, we just have to be careful the way it is put so that there is full understanding of it. Otherwise, (a) is the same; but (b), I have a problem with it.
    But Mr Speaker, having said that - That is why we are having difficulty following the vote. It would be better if we close for the day and then go and write it properly, so that it is advertised; we would be fresh tomorrow and we would follow it properly. This is because sometimes when we even read it -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:35 p.m.
    Hon Member, this is a Consideration Stage, so anybody can get up and put an amend- ment.
    Dr A. A. Osei 7:35 p.m.
    I am saying they can but when they do, you miss it; we miss it just like you missed the last part and I am saying that could be dangerous because we may not know -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:35 p.m.
    But this one is quite simple. They have agreed that we lift paragraph (c) of the Committee's amendment and add it as paragraph (d) to the Hon Minority Leader's amendment. That is all the import of what they are seeking to do. Is that not the position? And the Chairman of the Committee has no objection.
    Hon Boafo and then I will put the Question.
    Mr Boafo 7:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, if you are considering clause 22 (2), I have an additional amendment on page 22, the top most proposal. That is still on clause 22 (2). It is to acknowledge the role that the private sector should play. I am proposing the addition of a new paragraph:
    “To create an enabling environment

    for the greater role of the private sector”

    if we all accept that the private sector should be the engine of growth.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:35 p.m.
    Hon Chairman, have you seen the amendment to subclause (2), standing in the name of the Member for Akropong? He is suggesting that we should add an additional paragraph to clause 22. What is your comment.? You do not shake your head. Tell me what you want to say.
    Mr Avedzi 7:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, if the Hon Member can read the amendment again --
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:35 p.m.
    The amendment is there. It is on the Paper.
    Hon Chairman, the amendment is there; if you want him to give justification, it is a different matter.
    Mr Avedzi 7:35 p.m.
    Exactly so; that is what I want him to do; he should justify the amendment again.
    Mr Boafo 7:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the proposed amendment by the Chairman and the Hon Minority Leader set out the allocation of the Annual Budget Funding Amount and I find in the several heads named in the proposal, the absence of the role of the private sector. So I just want to add another paragraph to indicate that it should “create an enabling environment for the greater role of the private sector”, simply because of our aim to make sure that the private sector continues to serve as the engine of growth in our economy.
    Mr Haruna Iddrisu 7:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I have some difficulty with the particular clause and the proposed amendment.
    Mr Speaker, it appears that we are just doing what in ordinary sense, is “cut and paste”. We go to the Constitution, the
    words are provided under the Directive Principles of State Policy, we import them into a Petroleum Revenue Management Bill and that is precisely what is informing the addition of private sector. This is because somewhere in the Constitution, reference is made to the private sector.
    Mr Speaker, I do not think that we need to put this into a Petroleum Revenue Management Bill. For instance, I am aware that the Minister for Trade and Industry only last week launched the second Medium-Term Private Pubic Sector Development Strategy and it provides substantial mechanism to strengthen the relationship between the public sector and the private sector.
    I do not see what that will be doing with how we manage our petroleum revenue resources. There is a definite government strategy paper on this. I am even aware that somewhere along the line, there may be a Bill on Private Public Partnership. So I do not think that the Hon Member for Akropong's proposition fits in here.
    Mr Speaker, on the Hon Minority Leader's proposal, my difficulty is with his (c) I do not know whether he has done further amendment to it when he says --
    “And to undertake development of every part of each region of Ghana”.
    I do not know whether that still stands. But that in my opinion, lacks elegance. What does he mean when he says --
    “even and balanced development of all regions and every part of each region of Ghana”?
    I think that the rendition there is worrisome; if he can re-word it.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:35 p.m.
    Which part is worrisome? This is because what he is saying is that if you are from the Northern Region -
    Mr H. Iddrisu 7:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, maybe, he can just - [Interruptions.]
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 7:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, as I indicated, I thought that this whole - the remit of application is really reflecting on what is captured in articles 35 and 36. But specifically, if I should refer my Hon Colleague to article 36 (2) (d), it talks about
    “undertaking even and balanced development of all regions and every part of each region of Ghana.”
    So if the language, as he is saying, is not colourful and he wants maybe, to re- state it, he may do it. But I think that it is the sense that I wanted to carry. If he says that, yes, once we have the sense, let us capture it differently, I have nothing against it. But as I said, I wanted to capture the spirit and letter of the Constitution wherever applicable in this.
    Mr H. Iddrisu 7:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I can understand. That is why I premised my argument that we should avoid the attitude of wanting to lift verbatim what is in the Constitution and precisely, it helps his case. Mr Speaker, what he has referred to, I will think that it should end at:
    “And to undertake even and balanced development of all regions.”
    Otherwise, if we go further to what he wants, we may as well just capture exactly the words in the Constitution. This is because it goes further to say that --
    “in particular improving the conditions of life in the rural areas, and generally, redressing any imbalance in development between the rural and the urban areas.”
    That is, if you refer to article 36 (2) (d) as he did -- “even and equitable in all regions”. I think we should end it there, Mr Speaker.
    Mr J. B. Aidoo 7:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I would want to go with the amendment proposed by the Hon Minority Leader, provided he will tidy the rendition. Mr Speaker, you will realise that (2) is affecting the subclauses that they had proposed. So if (2) could be brought to the introduction and then “and” which you find in (c) is also brought after “citizens”, so that the rendition will be --
    “ The use of the annual allocation
    of the Petroleum Development Fund shall be to --
    (a) maximize the rate of economic development;
    (b) promote equality of economic opportunity with a view to ensuring the wellbeing of all citizens; and
    (c) undertake even and balanced development of all regions and every part of each region of Ghana.”
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 7:35 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, if we should add the (c) in the original, then it will not sit. So I think, as it is, if we maintain it that way, then we can easily incorporate the (c) provided by the Hon Chairman and then it will be smooth.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:35 p.m.
    And that will be “and to”. So we delete the “and”.
    Hon Minority Leader, we will have to delete the word “and” at the beginning of your (c), if you are adding that of the Chairman of the Committee --
    Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu 7:35 p.m.
    That is as it should be, Mr Speaker.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:45 p.m.
    Hon Members, what I intend doing is that, we put the Question on the combined amendments standing in the name of the Hon Minority Leader and the last clause of the Chairman. Then we take the new one as a separate one, so that if it is carried, it is also added to it.
    Hon Members, I am sure you have got the import of the amendment. What we are doing is to adopt the rendition of the Hon Minority Leader, basically, and then to add paragraph (c) which becomes paragraph (d) of that of the Chairman of the Committee's amendment. Yes -
    Mr Boafo 7:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, earlier, I had adverted your attention to my amend-ment
    -- 7:45 p.m.

    Mr Boafo 7:45 p.m.
    And if the Hon Minority Leader's amendment, which reflects something from the Constitution is adopted, I do not see why my own which equally reflects something from the Constitution should be rejected.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:45 p.m.
    The only reason for which I am doing that is because with the other ones; there is general consensus but with yours, there are objections. That is the only reason. So if we can take that one. Once it is carried, we can add that one to it.
    Mr Bagbin 7:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I totally agree with the proposed amendment, to combine that of the Hon Minority Leader with the (c) which will now become (d) of the Chairman, save that in the Chairman's (c), there is a reference to “long-term national development strategy”. But I will prefer “long-term national development plan --” plan approved by Parliament.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:45 p.m.
    It has been changed.
    Mr Bagbin 7:45 p.m.
    It has been changed?
    Dr A. A. Osei 7:45 p.m.
    I just need to be guided. There are about four amendments on clause 2 - [Interruption] - different; fine. We are only dealing with (2) and his was the third one. There are two others that you have not given people the opportunity to speak on and we want to go and - we skipped those; talked about Hon Boafo's -- went to the Hon Minority Leader's, Mr Nitiwul's has been skipped -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:45 p.m.
    Hon Member, I will take the new paragraph separately. It is the same principle that is why - the same principle; it is a new paragraph that he is adding basically.
    But if you look at what the Hon Minority Leader and the Chairman of the Committee have done, it is just a change of
    language. So, that is why there is a general consensus and then after that we take the new paragraphs.
    Yes, so I will give him the chance. This amendment will not negate the amend- ments in the name of the Hon Member for Akropong and the Hon Member for Takoradi; it will not. So we will take it and then I will move to them. Otherwise, the complications will become too much.
    Mr Kan-Dapaah 7:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I keep wondering -- the use of certain words. We say that the allocation will be to maximize the rate of economic development. In practice, how do we do this? I do not know whether you can give some thought to that. And then (c), I think it is a very powerful insertion except that when we say “guided by”, we are diluting what we really want to say. We want to say that any project, before it is captured in the annual Budget, must have been captured in the medium- term plan; fine. But it is guided by the words that we want to use - that the project must have its origin from the medium-term plan. I am not sure, and probably, the Hon Seth Terkpeh can help us here.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:45 p.m.
    Hon Member, we have passed there; we have debated this for a very long time - plan, framework and a whole lot of things. We have taken a very long time earlier in the day to have that discussion.
    Mr Kan-Dapaah 7:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, that was on the framework. I am worried about the “guided by”; what is “guided by”?
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:45 p.m.
    Hon Member, let me put the Question.
    Question put and amendment agreed to.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:45 p.m.
    Hon Boafo, the amendment -- Wait. Why? It is the Hon Minority Leader's amendment,
    plus the (c) of the -
    Dr A. A. Osei 7:45 p.m.
    That is precisely the point.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:45 p.m.
    But we are sending the “strategy” to “plan” to “framework” -
    Dr A. A. Osei 7:45 p.m.
    There was a further amendment to (c), which we accepted and we have not captured that; that is why I am asking.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:45 p.m.
    Which
    amendment?
    Dr A. A. Osei 7:45 p.m.
    That “and every part of each region of Ghana” should be deleted -
    Dr A. A. Osei 7:45 p.m.
    Yes. He accepted that amendment and -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:45 p.m.
    Somebody objected -
    Dr A. A. Osei 7:45 p.m.
    No, he offered and he - he made a recommendation -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:45 p.m.
    Hon Members -
    Dr A. A. Osei 7:45 p.m.
    It is true.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:45 p.m.
    Very well. That aspect of it is deleted accordingly.
    Hon Members, let us move to the amendment standing in the name of the Hon Member for Akropong. Then we move to the amendment standing in the joint names of the Members for Takoradi and Bimbilla.
    Mr Boafo 7:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I beg to
    move, clause 22, subclause (2), -- add the following new paragraph:
    “to create an enabling environment for the greater role of the private sector”.
    That is for us to acknowledge the role of the private sector and to encourage and strengthen that role.
    Mr Speaker, earlier, it has been pointed out that it reflects something from the Constitution. I do not find any bad substance in that objection.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:45 p.m.
    Which provisions in the Constitution?
    Mr Boafo 7:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, it is certainly article 36 (2)(b).
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:45 p.m.
    You used the words “pronounced role of the private sector”?
    Mr Boafo 7:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, my aim is not to pick something from the Constitution. My aim is to bring to the fore the need for us to encourage private sector parti- cipation in the economy of the country. And we can do so by making such a provision in the Bill. This is because the earlier amendment by the Chairman and the Hon Minority Leader acknowledges certain areas of the sectors of the economy but I could see that the private sector has been left out, hence my proposed amendment.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:45 p.m.
    What is the difference between “pronounced role” and “greater role”? The Constitution used the words “pronounced role” and you are using “greater role.”
    Mr Boafo 7:45 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I think those two words can be used interchangeably but I do not really bother if “pronounced
    Mr H. Iddrisu 7:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I ordinarily would oppose this proposed amendment by the Hon Member for Akropong but better still, to urge and persuade him to abandon the amendment. Mr Speaker, we have come very far as a country since the Structural Adjustment Programme. There is a pronounced role for the private sector in Ghana's economy in the last two decades.
    There is evidence that the private sector is playing a lead role; whether it is agriculture or telecommunications, the private sector is playing a pronounced role in our economy. Gone are the days when our economy was State-dominated where the State was the provider of all services.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:55 p.m.
    Hon Minister, what would it take away if this provision which is in the Constitution is put there? What would it take away? I want you to address that aspect of it.
    Mr H. Iddrisu 7:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the Constitution is the grown norm; why are we going back and forth just lifting provisions in the Constitution to come into a legislation on petroleum management? “Pronounced role of the private sector” is not the same thing as “an enabling environment for the private sector”. So, if he wants, he can go back for the words in the private sector. His amendment reads:
    “. . . to create an enabling environ- ment for the greater role of the private sector.”
    Mr Speaker, let me give you an example 7:55 p.m.
    today, the private sector wants zero taxes. That in their view is what will give them an enabling environment to triumph. But as a government, we have a delicate dilemma to raise revenue through
    taxation from the private sector. So, when we put this in a law, we will be creating problems for the State.
    Enabling environment for private sector -- who defines the enabling environ- ment? What “does enabling environment” mean? It means, for instance, we tax them and then they return the next day and say, no, Government is bringing in taxes which are killing our businesses. That runs conversely to mean that we are not creating an enabling environment. I think that we should be very careful in wanting to make this law. I have no difficulty with us imposing an obligation on government to provide an enabling environment but this is a matter of policy, not to put in legislation.
    Mr Dery 7:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I think that the Hon Minister for Communications wanted to know why we want parts of the Constitution to be part of a law. And I think he should remember that the Chapter we are dealing with is Directive Principles of State Policy and therefore, he knows that the justiciability of those provisions are a subject which have been dealt with only by aside declarations. When they become part of a law, they become justiciable. That is the difference. So, he saying that in the end, the private sector will come out with conditions that are unreasonable and against -
    Dr A. A. Osei — rose
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:55 p.m.
    Do you have a point of order?
    Dr A. A. Osei 7:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, no, a point of clarification.
    The Hon Member is using some language that some of us may not understand. He should not assume that - He said: “justifiable” . If he puts it in simple language, we can follow him. What does he mean?
    Mr Dery 7:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, my big brother
    has been using his economic terms and jargons and I am sure he has been getting away with them.
    By “justiceable”, I simply mean enforceable by the courts. And I want to say that the Hon Minister for Communi- cations should not be afraid. We will not allow any private sector to bring unreasonable conditions to make it impossible for a government to -
    But we the Members of the Parliament of Ghana -- I think that except he has other reasons for disagreeing with the provisions becoming part of the law, he should not say that because they are part of the Constitution, they should not be part of the law. I have told him why they should be part of the law. This is because they are not enforceable where they are.
    Mr Dominic B. A. Nitiwul 7:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, just to allay the fears of the Hon Minister for Communications. The first statement -- [Interruptions]-- of the memorandum of this Bill is very clear and I think if we go back to it, it will help us.
    It says that the purpose of the Bill is to provide a framework that will guide the efficient collection, allocation and management of petroleum revenue for the benefit of current and future generations of Ghanaians and also to ensure that the overall management of petroleum revenue is based on sound, sustainable fiscal policy that will transcend political regimes.
    Mr Speaker, his amendment is not affecting all lots but it is affecting the use, the collection and management of petroleum revenue. He is saying that, look, let us create an enabling environment for the greater role of private sector vis- a-vis the collection, the allocation and management of the petroleum revenue. I am not sure that he is saying that we should make a law, or this particular law is going to affect all revenues. That is not what he is saying.
    He is talking about revenues that emanate from the petroleum resources. So that is why I was just trying to draw his attention that what he was saying was
    that in utilising, collecting and using the petroleum revenue, we should be able to create an enabling environment for the private sector to grow. That is why I will support his amendment.
    Thank you, Mr Speaker.
    Mr Avedzi 7:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I think the amendment should not be carried.
    First, how can the Petroleum Revenue Management Bill, or the law create the enabling environment for private sector participation? How? How can the revenue collection, allocation and management of petroleum revenue create the enabling environment for the private sector?
    Dr A. A. Osei 7:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I am surprised that the Chairman would get up and ask, why must we create enabling environment? The amendments -- For example, how can we -[Interruption.]
    Mr Avedzi 7:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I did not say
    “why”? I said how will it create? How will this law for the management of the petroleum revenue create the environ- ment.?
    Dr A. A. Osei 7:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, the amendments that he is proposing, one of them says, we have to maximize the rate of economic development. He should tell
    Mr Avedzi 7:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, that will be done through the normal budget process that we have been doing.
    Dr A. A. Osei 7:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, that Bill can in no way be used to maximize the rate of economic development. The Annual Budget Funding Amount is the same principles that he is using. In any case, all of us are aware that the dominant players in that sector -- As we speak, the dominant players are the private people. This is for emphasis to encourage them. Only GNPC has 13.75 per cent; that is only the State's interest. It means the balance is for the private sector. So we are encouraging the Government so that this private sector role can come in. Even, whether they are Ghanaians or the Local Content Bill, it is meant to do that, so it is harmless. When we have harmless issues, we should just add them and let us go on.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:55 p.m.
    Hon Members, I am going to put the Question.
    Hon Member for Akropong, are you using the words, “pronounced role” or you want to keep “greater role”?
    Mr Boafo 7:55 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, for purposes of consistency, I will adopt the “pronounced”.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:55 p.m.
    Hon Members, clause 22, subclause 2, add the following new paragraph
    “To create an enabling environment for the pronounced role of the private sector.”
    Question put and amendment nega- tived.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 7:55 p.m.
    Hon Member for Takoradi?
    Mr Kwabena O. Darko-Mensah 8:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I beg to move clause 22, subclause 2, add the following new paragraph:
    “(d) support for communities which the catchment area of oil and gas operations.”
    Mr Speaker, I do believe that we all know the consequences and the risks of those communities in the production and exploration of oil all over the world. And I do believe that it is very appropriate that we include this in clause 22, so that when we are disbursing support from the Annual Budget Funding Amount, we should be able to support communities which host -- I also do believe that it is very consistent with the NDC Manifesto -- 94 which states,
    “invest in infrastructure, fiscal and social in communities in the oil and gas production areas.”
    I do believe that it is very correct and when we are able to add this, it will mean that in all communities that oil and gas operations will be taking place will also be enabled for support from the annual funding amount.
    Mr Nitiwul 8:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, just to add to what my good Friend from Takoradi has said.
    It is very important that if we are making any law, we will want to do it to get the direct benefit and maximize the benefit of any law that we have been making for this our nation. Mr Speaker, if we want to have a good source and a saving supply of resources from the oil resources, we need to really look at the communities that surround the oil find and make sure that their interests are taken care of.
    Mr Speaker, it is no wonder that most manifestoes, including the ruling Govern- ment's Manifesto are very specific on the usage of oil resources vis-a-vis the support of the communities that are around
    the oil revenue. That is why it says that the oil resources will be used to support communities in the oil and gas producing areas.
    In fact, I can state that all parties that had this manifesto, this provision was embedded in it and I am sure that it is for a good reason that all parties felt that it was important to support communities. This is because we have seen it all over the world, that countries that have not taken the pain to look critically at the communities that support, usually have problems to the extent that they lose more than they gain. We do not want to have an example of such a thing. Neighbouring Nigeria has that problem. So it is important --
    Mr Speaker, experience, they say, is the best teacher. If you want to learn something, experience it, then you can always remember. Mr Speaker, I am not sure anybody will be happy with the state of Obuasi, with our gold resources, the way Obuasi town is. Mr Speaker, I am not sure anybody is happy with the way Tarkwa is vis-a-vis what Tarkwa produces and what Tarkwa town looks like.
    I am not sure that the catchment area including Jomoro Constituency, including the constituency where my Friend the Deputy Minister is coming from, including the village, like Nkroful where the late Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah comes from - [Interruptions.] I am not sure, Mr Speaker, that we can look into the eyes of those people and say that we will not capture a clause that will say that we should support the communities, especially those that will directly be hit in case of a problem.
    Mr Speaker, can you imagine the effect that the production of oil will have on the fishing communities in this area? Mr Speaker, it is going to be very disastrous for them. We all know that most of the people around these areas are fishermen and most of them depend on fishing. If they start fishing and there is a problem in the area, especially with spillage, they
    are going to have a problem.
    So, I support -- and that is why I was part of the people who proposed this amendment that we should support the communities within the catchment area of the oil and gas operations. And just to state, Mr Speaker, that in the Interpretation section, the words “catchment area” will be defined and the draftpersons will be able to do that.
    I seek the support of Hon Members here and opposite that they should support this amendment. It is in the good interest of all of us as a country to have something that the people around the oil producing area -- whether today, it is Western Region, tomorrow, it is Greater Accra or the next day, it is Volta Region. It is very important that we have something for them that tomorrow they can use that resource to develop their area.
    Mr Speaker, the Vice President, for example, has clearly said he stands by what he said - [Interruptions] - He stands by what he said when he said that they should give a certain percentage of the revenue to the people. Mr Speaker -- [Interruptions] -- [An Hon Member: Volta people, why are you against Western Region?] - Mr Speaker, well, let them insult the people of Western Region.
    But Mr Speaker, I insist and crave the indulgence and the support of my Hon Members that we should support this clause and get the people who are closer to the oil to benefit from the future revenue.
    Mr Speaker, I thank you very much.
    Mr H. Iddrisu 8:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I believe that if the Hon Members who moved this amendment pay proper attention to the earlier clause 22, where direct reference was made to provisions of the Constitution, specifically on matters of Directive Principles of State Policy -- I heard the Hon Deputy Minority Leader educating us on what was justiciable and what was not justiciable.
    Mr H. Iddrisu 8:05 p.m.


    Mr Speaker, we have just given approval that to ensure, to quote the words of the Hon Minority Leader -- “balanced and equitable development”. Mr Speaker, therefore, any other suggestion to want to seek to categorise catchment areas --

    Mr Speaker, it is not for nothing that all mineral resources of this country, by virtue of provisions of the Constitution, are vested in the President and the President is a trustee -- [Inter-ruptions] - I am using the words of the Constitution -- the President shall be the trustee for the people of Ghana, the generality of the people of Ghana. Therefore, the utilization of petroleum revenue and all other resources -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 8:05 p.m.
    Hon Member, you know what we call “corporate responsibility” with regard to companies. So if you are raising it to the level of State, so that the catchment areas, some support is going to them, what is the objection to it?
    Hon Members, I want somebody to educate me. Maybe, I am not getting the arguments well, that is why I want -
    Alhaji Fuseini 8:05 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I rise to oppose the amendment moved by - [Interruptions] -- Mr Speaker, I understand the elucidation that you require -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 8:05 p.m.
    One minute.
    Alhaji Fuseini 8:05 p.m.
    The elucidation
    that you require is that you have to take a critical look at article 4 of the Constitution and then take a critical look at the natural resources governance in (g) in the Constitution; then you look critically at the law of the oceans and the oceans being the common heritage of mankind
    and the responsibilities of the State of Ghana towards other ocean users and how natural resources found in the ocean are dealt with. That is the governance regime of natural resources found in oceans.
    Mr Speaker, if the amendment is moved, it will clearly demonstrate to you that, yes, there might be the responsibility of Government and that is why we supported the Hon Minority Leader in moving for giving legal effect to provisions in the Directive Principles of State Policy, which the Supreme Court has interpreted variously not to be justiciable that if we are able to move those provisions from the Constitution, which calls for equitable development of the regions in Ghana into a law, then we will be giving effect to it.
    So, Mr Speaker, it is quite dangerous to begin to tie natural resources found in the ocean -
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 8:15 p.m.
    Hon Member, they said “support”. They did not tie it -- They just said “support to the communities in the catchment area.” Do not forget that when we talk about corporate responsibility, in this particular case, the State of Ghana is a shareholder in the operations of that area. So, I do not know but -
    Hon Member, finish, then I can call the Hon Member for Manhyia.
    Dr Prempeh 8:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I do not want to say because we have sat for long, people are not applying themselves and they are voting in a certain direction.
    Mr Speaker, what is at all wrong when Government is a shareholder in the operation of those fields for us to say that Government should just recognise that there are certain communities that are affected more than others?
    Mr Speaker, even where the Floating Production Storage and Offloading (FPSO) is, within a certain perimeter around it, people are not allowed to fish;
    Alhaji Fuseini 8:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, on a point of order. Mr Speaker, the point of order is that he is misleading the House. The only platform that he is referring to is sixty-four nautical miles from the post. That is number one.
    Secondly, Mr Speaker, he is further misleading the House because before the discovery of oil, in fact, artisanal fishing in our territorial waters is limited to six nautical miles. That is what he should know and that is why when he said that people were fishing there -- Artisanal fishermen will not go there, so he should not mislead the House.
    Dr Prempeh 8:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I would not like such misleading statements to find themselves in the public domain. This is because what the Hon Deputy Minister is trying to say is that, when the operators of the fields have declared a certain perimeter as no fishing area and he comes to stand here to say what he is saying, it is a disgrace. Mr Speaker, we should mind the way we talk.
    Mr First Deputy Speaker 8:15 p.m.
    Hon Member, that language is too strong. Withdraw it.
    Dr Prempeh 8:15 p.m.
    All right. Mr Speaker, I withdraw it.
    Mr Speaker, we should make respon- sible statements in this House; we should not undermine the very essence of what we are promoting. It is not for nothing that they are promoting that a certain perimeter within the catchment area, people should
    not fish there. It is for a particular purpose.
    Mr Speaker, all that the amendment is proposing to do is that the State should have a corporate social responsibility. Mr Speaker, my Hon Friend who just spoke is probably not wiser than the framers of the NDC Manifesto when they used the same words that, the NDC Government, when they come to power, will support development in those catchment areas.
    Mr Speaker, with your permission, I beg to quote page 94 of the NDC Manifesto 8:15 p.m.
    “We will invest in infrastructure, physical and social, in communities in the oil and gas production areas.”
    Alhaji Fuseini 8:15 p.m.
    Mr Speaker, I rise again on a point of order. Mr Speaker, my good Friend from Manhyia, Hon Prempeh should know that in the Law of the Seas, the artisanal fishing -