The Minority in Parliament has expressed its satisfaction with the government’s decision to suspend the laying of the controversial Import Restrictions Bill before Parliament.
In a press statement issued on Friday, December 8, and signed by their leader, Dr. Cassiel Ato Forson, the Minority commended the government for allowing common sense to prevail.
Dr. Ato Forson added that the Minority is not against the policy itself, but the unfettered discretionary power it would have given to the Trade Minister.
According to the former Deputy Finance Minister, this would have exacerbated the already high cost of living in the country.
The Ajumako-Enyan-Essiam lawmaker also commended all well-meaning Ghanaians for supporting their resistance.
“We are happy that the government has jettisoned these regulations after stiff resistance and opposition in Parliament by the Minority Caucus.”
“We wish to assure the Ghanaian people and the business community that the Minority will always be on their side and put their interest first. Ghana First!”
On Thursday, December 7, the Trades and Industry Ministry suspended the laying of the L.I.
According to the Minister of Information Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, the move is to allow for further consultations.
Speaking to JoyNews’ Maame Esi Thompson, Mr Nkrumah said “First, we think that the economic objectives will work well for our growth and jobs and our development agenda. Therefore, it is important to get all stakeholders aligned as we go along this process. The idea is to suspend the laying, engage further, and get some more understanding and participation before we go in.
“You know it is an L.I., you (are) going to factor in all of these views. Then, when you lay it, it can mature after the necessary 21 days because it is not a bill that would be amended on the floor. So, this would allow us to complete all of these engagements before any such laying takes place.”
Subsequently, the Ghana Union of Traders Association (GUTA) has lauded the government’s choice to suspend the Bill.
Dr. Joseph Obeng, the President of GUTA, expressed contentment with the government’s decision, highlighting the significance of further consultations.
He reassured businesses of GUTA’s preparedness to contribute essential insights for a more comprehensive bill.
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