Minority calls for withdrawal of Ghana, US defence agreement

The Minority in Parliament has called for the withdrawal of the defence cooperation agreement between Ghana and the United States from Parliament claiming the document has not been signed.

According to them, the process which the government is seeking to introduce the agreement to the House for approval was not appropriate saying there is no signature on the memorandum.

Mr Rockson Etse Dafeamekpor, Member of Parliament (MP) for South Dayi made the call when he spoke to the media in Parliament.

The Speaker Professor Aaron Mike Oquaye, referred the agreement to the committee on Defence and Interior as well as the Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs after the document had been laid before the House

The Minority recently requested for the speedy withdrawal of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on defence cooperation between Ghana and the United States from Parliament to allow for broader consultations.

Cabinet approved the MoU on March 8, 2018, and recommended that Parliament ratifies the agreement to allow US forces and their equipment unhindered access in Ghana.

Per the agreement, the US military is, among other things, to be exempted from paying tax on the equipment to be brought into Ghana.

The decision attracted criticisms from sections of Ghanaians.

Mr Dafeamekpor therefore charged the government to withdraw the document, signed it and bring it back for approval. 

“As a Member of Parliament, I cannot be part of a process that will go and vary the terms of a memorandum that is yet to be signed. There is no signature on the memorandum”.

He said the memo accompanying the memorandum to Parliament stated that cabinet approved the memorandum and recommended same for Parliament for ratification.

Mr Dafeamekpor also explained that the document the government brought to Parliament neither an agreement nor a Bill and asked the government to do the appropriate thing by taking back the memorandum, execute it and bring it to Parliament for ratification.

Source: GNA

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