"I struggled to contain myself after allegations"- Joe Osei Owusu
| Updated Apr 02, 2017 at 2:00am
First Deputy Speaker, Joe Osei-Owusu
First Deputy Speaker, Joe Osei-Owusu has conceded that a week after the bribery allegation that hit the Appointments Committee of Parliament, he became emotional and struggled to contain himself.
Appearing before the five member Special Committee to investigate bribery allegation as a first witness, Joe Osei-Owusu maintained his innocence of the claims of his role in the bribery scandal that rocked the Committee.
He told members that allegations that he had taken money from then Energy Minister then nominee, Boakye Agyarko are false and that he has never done any such thing.
“I must confess that the first week after the incident, it was difficult for me, I was visibly angry and was clearly not myself. It was difficult for me to look into people’s eyes,” he told the Committee.
Mr. Osei Owusu said he was initially outraged at the allegations during a meeting of the committee members but calmed down after he was given the impression by Okudzeto Ablakwa that the allegations were a mere political retaliation to Mr. Agyarko’s insinuation during his vetting, that former President John Mahama was corrupt.
“Because Agyarko said our President was corrupt, referring to former President John Mahama, we were spreading the corruption allegations. So then the mood in the room changed and we all laughed at it,” he recounted.
Mr. Boakye Agyarko , Minister of Energy and Petroleum, has been accused by Member of Parliament for Bawku Central, Mahama Ayariga of attempting to bribe 10 Minority members of Parliament’s Appointments Committee, with GHc 3,000 each, prior to his approval.
Member of Parliament for Bawku Central, Mahama Ayariga alleged that the money was given to the Minority Chief Whip, Mubarak Mohammed Muntaka by the Chairman of the Appointments Committee, Joseph Osei-Owusu for onward disbursement, a claim other minority members including Alhassan Suhuyini and Okudzeto Ablakwa confirmed.
Chairman of the Committee, Joe Ghartey, announced that the doors are open for other members of the committee to bring evidence in the course of the public hearing.
Next sitting will be on Friday, February 17, 2017 and they are expected to take evidence from three more witnesses, Mohammed Mubarak Muntaka, Mahama Ayariga and Boakye Agyarko, Energy Minister.