The Speaker of Parliament, Prof. Mike Oquaye says Parliament will have to do more to give value for money in the signing of international agreements.
According to him, it has become ostensible for Members of Parliament to become acquainted with the law and international best practices to ensure that the state benefits fully from all international agreements.
Speaking at a training workshop organized by Parliamentary Training Institute, he lamented instances where the state has been shortchanged in some agreements brought before the House due to gaps in some the conditions at to some agreements.
“Sometimes when you just look at the financials, and see there is so much percent of soft facility in that particular loan, you tend you think that, if they are giving us… [an mount] plus half, then it looks good, but what is the real value on which the [said amount] has been worked [on] because there are things that even when it has been given to you, as a gift, you have to be very, very careful, in accepting them. These are the dynamics that experts are able to put together in a multi-disciplinary approach,” he said.
On his part, Majority Leader, Osei Kyei Mensah Bonsu stated that equipping legislators with the requisite skills will help in identifying various ways in protecting the general public purse.
“What do we do with the Auditor General’s report? Should it come to Parliament before or should the Attorney General, once he finishes with his business, go public and condemn people? Yet, when the report comes, Parliament interrogates it only to realize that the Auditor General has made a lot of mistakes. What do we do?”
The training which was premised on provisions of the constitution which mandates Parliament to ensure that Ghana conducts international affairs in compliance with public international law and diplomacy and that Parliament must approve all Government of Ghana loans taking into consideration any interest payment and impact on the economy.