MPs study budget prior to debate

Monday, 18th November 2019

A post-budget workshop to enable Members of Parliament (MPs) to deliberate on the content of the 2020 Budget opened in Parliament house over the weekend.

The two-day workshop, in accordance with the practice of the house, will afford MPs the opportunity to critically study the budget as presented to them by the Finance Minister, Mr Ken Ofori-Atta, to enable them to sufficiently debate it.

Annual event The annual event, which was held outside the Greater Accra Region for a number of years, was held in Parliament’s Job 600 Complex to save the nation the cost of travelling outside Accra with a huge budget.

It is on the theme: “Consolidating the gains for growth, jobs and prosperity for all”, just like the 2020 Budget Statement and Economic Policy of the Government.

Opening the workshop, the Speaker of Parliament, Professor Aaron Michael Oquaye, called on MPs to engage in meaningful deliberations and make all the necessary documents available to the house to enrich discussions.

He said he was happy that members were not traveling outside Accra to return with a huge budget of about GH¢1.7 million, adding that such things prevented MPs and parliamentary staff from enjoying better privileges, including housing and vehicles.

Post budget According to the Speaker, the post-budget workshop was a budgetary affair which involved opportunity cost on how best to maximise the use of resources in terms of the benefits.

He noted that “it is important to develop this politics of issues” and urged the legislators not to give room to “politics of vituperations”.

The workshop will tackle topics such as: “Policy Underpinnings of the 2020 Budget”, “Overview of the 2020 Budget - Macro Economic and Fiscal Management” and “What to Consider in Analysing the 2020 Sector Budgets”.

Also to be considered are: “Planning and Delivery on Infrastructure”, “Revenue Mobilisation”, “Workers’ Perspective on the 2020 Budget” and “The 2020 Budget and the Energy Sector”.

The Majority Leader and Minister of Parliamentary Affairs, Mr Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, asserted that MPs had a duty to thoroughly scrutinise the budget, devoid of political differences, and find common grounds on technical matters germane to its content.