I will continue from where Alan Kyerematen left off – K.T. Hammond
Mr Kobina Tahir Hammond, the Minister-Designate for Trade and Industry, says the Government had been in power for the past six years and the blocks had already been laid, hence he will continue from where his predecessor, Mr Alan Kyerematen, left off.
“Government has been in power for the past six years, and I’m just coming in at the tail end – two years to go,” he said.
Mr Hammond, also the New Patriotic Party Member of Parliament for Adansi Asokwa, said this on Monday when he appeared before the Appointments Committee of Parliament for vetting.
He expressed concern over Ghana’s over-dependence on importation, which had terrible effects on the country’s foreign exchange reserves.
“I think it’s about time we took a serious look at this particular issue. I’m told a committee was put up by Cabinet to deal specifically with this matter.”
On his achievements as a deputy minister of Energy, Mr Hammond mentioned the expansion of rural electrification and the signing of contracts for exploration of oil in commercial quantities, as some of the success stories under the Kufuor Administration.
During his tenure as a deputy minister of the Interior, the Kufuor Administration ensured that Immigration officers could carry some weapons on them, he said.
Mr Hammond, in responding to the report of the Sole Commissioner on Judgement Debt, concerning the sale of the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) Drill Ship and the Government’s White Paper on it, which was raised by Mr Kwame Governs Agbodza, the Minority Chief Whip, the nominee said the decision to sell the Drill Ship was a cabinet one.
The White Paper also referred Mr Hammond to the Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO) for further investigations on the payment of $900,000.00 to the Law Firm ‘Constant and Constant’.
“Government further directs EOCO to investigate the mandate, authority and/or basis of Mr K.T. Hammond’s disbursement of the $900,000.00 to the Law Firm ‘Constant and Constant’ to cater for future debts of GNPC to other creditors.’’
Mr Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, the Majority Leader, urged the Committee to knock on the door of EOCO for further clarification on the matter.
Mr Hammond spoke about other issues such as the One District, One Factory, tax exemption and other flagship projects of the Government, which, he noted, were great initiatives to spur economic growth.