Your Member of Parliament and mine as well, are all getting brand new V8's costing a whooping $100,000 and in making this, that many consider to be unfortunate spending a reality, the Finance Ministry has presented to Parliament a request by government for a $28 million loan from the National Investment Bank.
Laying the request, to finance the purchase of 275 vehicles for the members of the eighth Parliament, on the Floor, Deputy Finance Minister, Abena Osei Asare, said the loan agreement is between the government, represented by the Finance, Ministry members of the 8th Parliament and the National Investment Bank Limited. The medium-term loan, expected to be disbursed to MPs, is to be paid back by the members in the course of the four-year duration stay as MPs.
In a rebuttal by renowned Social media commentator, who also doubles as a Lawyer and Professor, Kwaku Azar, is saddened by this news and in his opinion, considering the weak economic progress in the country right now, coupled with the poor standards of living, the MP's may well be short-changing the country, they claim to be rightful leaders.
In a Facebook post today, he writes therefore that:
"I have never believed in this car loan business (see below). But the pill that is most difficult to swallow these days is this need to buy a $100,000 vehicle. There are lots of reliable and luxurious SUVs for $50,000 or less including Kia Sorento, Toyota Highlander, etc.
If you say you need vehicles why not buy from this category, which is still beyond the reach of most professionals. How do we reasonably and honestly look at our GDP, problems, treasury rates, the beneficiaries’ income, etc. and somehow justify this $100,000 loan?
If I knew then what I am seeing now, I would not have wasted my energy and resources on this saga. #SALL is the cardinal sin of the 8th Parliament. Da Yie!" he wrote.
Lawyer Kwaku Azar, is fast gaining popularity on Facebook and is currently followed by over 29,228 followers and his fast rising reputation on the social media platform is because, many identify him, as one of few conscience of the nation, as he largely advocates for things, which the ordinary Ghanaian can easily identify with, unlike many of the political leaders, who upon getting into office, suddenly do even worse, what they claimed to be bad earlier.
Commentary following his post, have included the following:
Selorm Branttie writes "Thing is, the 60% government is paying for nu, it's like $60,000 which will get a very good Highlander or Telluride or Sorento"
Bernard Kelvin Taggor SarkCess writes "MPs should go directly to banks for their car loan....because majority of them have defaulted in paying bank loans... they fear such request won't be granted'
Kpabitey Nyako writes "Hhhmmm, Is it true the President has bagged himself a $340,000 Rolls Royce Cullinane Luxury SUV delivered by air freight? Wow!! They should just start dressing up as Arab Sheiks"
Adjei Worlanyo writes "When it comes to salary increment and better condition of service for them, then you see them building consensus. Prof, something is really wrong. Ghanaians are becoming impatient with our parliamentarians. Prof Kwaku Azar"
Martin Akandawen writes "I am not in support of GOV fronting for loans for purchase of vehicles for MPs. However if it must be done, it should be for only new entrants. Those who enjoyed such car loans 4yrs ago shouldn't benefit from this again."
Kwabena Bediako writes "Kwaku Azar , mese why don't they give them this loan and require them to establish businesses to show us what they can do. After all it's about growing the nation and reducing unemployment and for the GDP bit we have to put a cap on it, for not everything in the nation belongs to government. The Constitution must be reviewed."
Jake PJ Herbert writes "I used to think the cow was being milked until I realised suddenly that, the cow is now missing."
Jude Nartey writes "Seriously we need a third option"
Kay Yeboah writes "I hear say 60% of the MP's car loan is absorbed by the taxpayer. Ghana ayɛ mobɔ dodo!"
Qwabena Agyei writes "hmmm small country like this we spend money like nothing and we cannot build companies to create employment."
Kassim Mubarak writes "Very sad, thus why Sometimes I pretend the news we hear is not true"
Maximus Attah writes "Hahahaha. It’s always been a dash"
Lilian Akosua Bediako writes "It's sad to be a Ghanaian under this government"
Eric Ackuaku writes "Hmm, it is just sad, Prof!"
Anthony Zumoh-Baligi writes "It's a facade period!"
Awuku Goldman Dodzi writes "Sad as if this is the first time a loan facility is made available to Parliamentarians. If you want to condemn this convention of car loans, do that and stop this."
Interestingly, whereas a few of the legislators are not in support of this loans for tear rubber vehicles for them, majority are obviously in support. One of such is the Member of Parliament for South Dayi, Rockson-Nelson Dafeamekpor, who has thrown his weight behind the proposed $28 million car loan agreement presented to Parliament by the Ministry of Finance.
Rockson-Nelson Dafeamekpor, advanced the argument that, it is a reality that, some of his colleague MP's go to Parliament in Uber rides, which is worrying and unsafe and hence, arguing in favour of the agreement, the legislator insisted that MPs deserve better than the $28 million car loan being given to them to purchase vehicles; and should rather be given official cars like members of the Executive and Legislature.
“Check the condition of service for the Electoral Commissioner. She has about 5 military officers following her in two Land cruisers. She is an article 71 officeholder. She was not given money or a loan to buy these vehicles. I don’t have five military men following me. Supreme Court judges have Land cruisers, they were not given loans to buy their Land cruisers. Ministers of State have Land cruisers or official vehicles. Yesterday, you saw in the papers that another facility is being taken by the Executive to acquire official vehicles for members of the Council of State," he said, whiles speaking on Joy News TV.
“MPs are the only category of article 71 holders who are not given an official vehicle. So if the agreement is that, we are given a loan, to purchase official vehicles, I think it is very wrong. My position is that the government should take steps and get us official vehicles to perform the functions of our office in the next four years like it is done for all the other categories,” he said.
the South Dayi MP stated that in the absence of MPs being given official vehicles, they deserve the loan. “It is not about rejecting it, as we speak we have been in office for seven months and our colleagues who are new and did not have the benefit of having strong vehicles come to this House with Uber and it’s very dangerous. The arrangement may be wrong and for me it is wrong, but I cannot say because it is wrong if there are no other alternatives I won’t accept it,” he had added.
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