A private legal practitioner, Martin Kpebu, has averred that the role of caretaker ministers is known to the constitution.
His view is contrary to claims by NDC parliamentary leader Haruna Iddrisu who insists it is an illegality.
Interestingly both men cited the same case as reference – the 1997 J. H. Mensah vs. Attorney General Case. Kpebu, speaking on Joy News, said the president was within his rights to nominate persons to act pending nomination and vetting of substantive appointees.
“My reading of the J. H. Mensah versus Attorney General Case is rather to the contrary. In that case, the Supreme Court held that because parliament will need some time to settle down, form committees, do the vetting and all that…
“… the president has the right to appoint some people to act as ministers for a reasonable time pending the proper vetting and approval of these ministers, so it means that as soon as the president is sworn in, he can appoint acting ministers which is known to the constitution,” he added.
For his part, the Tamale South MP explained – also on Joy News – that in the said case, the Supreme Court ruled that there was nothing like ‘acting’ or ‘holding’ minister.
“I have seen some former ministers still hold themselves about as if they are ministers. That is unlawful, that is illegal and unconstitutional. As we speak today, Ghana has no ministers,” Haruna Iddrisu said on Joy Prime monitored by GhanaWeb.
“The President got it wrong. Their mandate has elapsed and until they are nominated, go through vetting, secure approval of Parliament, they cannot hold themselves out as Ministers. So as far as we are concerned, there is nothing like an Acting Minister and the Supreme Court does not recognize such a position.”