Parliament prepares to host President Mills

Parliament prematurely adjourned on Wednesday to hold concluding consultation on the thorny clause 23 of the Petroleum Revenue Management Bill 2010.

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The adjournment also aimed at allowing members to prepare for the visit of President John Evans Atta Mills to the house on Thursday to give the State of the Nation address.

Mr Cletus Avoka asked members to take their seats by 0900 hours. He said members who had issues with clause 23 or the entire petroleum bill should attend the scheduled consultative meeting.

The clause states that 93outside of the national budget allocations extra budgetary activities and statutory earmarking of petroleum revenue for any special considerations is prohibited”.

The clause attracted three major amendments- first from the Chairman of the Finance Committee Mr James Klutse Avedzi who said 93extra budgetary activities and statutory earmarking of the petroleum revenue for exceptional purposes is prohibited”.

Another amendment which stood in the name of Mr Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, Minority Leader said 93outside of the allocations to the Petroleum Holding Fund extra budgetary activities based on the statutory earmarking of the petroleum revenue for any consideration is prohibited.”

The third amendment was jointly proposed by Mr Kwabena 96Okyere Darko-Mensah New Patriotic Party (NPP) Member for Takoradi, Mr Dominic Nitiwul NPP member for Bimbilla, Mrs Gifty Eugenia, Kusi (NPP) Deputy Minority Chief Whip and Dr Mathew Opoku Prempeh NPP member for Manhyia.

They proposed that (a): 93A 10 per cent of the Petroleum Holding Fund should be devoted to a Western Regional Development Fund as one of the several sources of the fund,” (b): The Western Regional Development Fund is hereby established and (c) Outside of the Western Regional Development Fund and the national budget allocation, extra budgetary activities and statutory earmarking of the revenues for special considerations is prohibited.”