…as Nigeria’s Speaker makes case for the amendment of Ghana’s GIPC Act
The President of Ghana, Prof. Nana Akufo Ado has assured the Speaker of Nigeria’s House of Representatives, Rep. Femi Gbajabiamila of the readiness of the Ghanaian government to consider the resolutions reached at the ‘Legislative Diplomacy Bilateral Meeting’ between Nigeria and Ghana’s senior legislators on 2nd September 2020, at the Ghanaian Parliament House.
The Ghanian President gave the assurance when the Speaker of Ghana’s parliament, Prof. Mike Oquaye, upon completion of the 2-day extensive dialogue, led his Nigerian counterpart on a courtesy visit to the President at the Jubilee House, Accra, Ghana on Thursday.
The legislative diplomacy dialogue became imperative as the parliaments of the two countries sought modalities to resolve challenges and provide an enabling business environment for foreign traders including Nigerians doing business in Ghana. Several foreign businesses, many Nigerian-owned, in Ghana have been facing challenges in the demand for $1m capital base for foreign traders, as enshrined in the Ghana Investment Promotion Center GIPC Act (2013)
Responding to a request by Nigeria’s Speaker, Rep. Femi Gbajabiamila for a review of the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC) Act to make certain concessions, President Akufo-Addo said the request was in order as it “makes a lot of sense”
The Ghanaian President, who expressed satisfaction with Gbajabiamila’s visit, endorsed his proposal for the establishment of a ‘Nigeria-Ghana Business Council’ established by law in both countries, and he additionally suggested the setting up of a joint ministerial committee between the two countries that will “shepherd” issues between Ghana and Nigeria.
He told Gbajabiamila he would also raise the issue with President Muhammadu Buhari when they meet at the ECOWAS Summit on Monday.
“I think the way forward, which is really what matters in situations like this, that is being suggested, one that I find very acceptable, the idea of legislation, a Nigeria Ghana business council that will superintendent trade matters and investment matters between our two countries, maybe long overdue.”
“The time has come for us to take these worthwhile steps. I suggested to Mr. President that it will be a good idea to set up a joint ministerial committee of ministers from both sides who will be responsible for shepherding Ghana and Nigeria issues, reporting to both presidents at any one time, and that is how they should be resolved.”
“I am hoping when I see him on Monday for the ECOWAS summit, we can advance these discussions and come to a final conclusion.
“The way you yourselves have come about this matter is very satisfactory, and it requires our support. The review that you are asking for, why not? if it works in our mutual perspectives, we can take it for granted that your request will be taken seriously. We will have a look at it.”
“So, the request for the review makes a lot of sense,” President Akufo-Addo said.
Earlier, Gbajabiamila, who was in the company of some of his colleagues in Nigeria’s House of Representatives, which included the Chairmen of House Committees on Foreign Affairs, Media and Public Affairs , Deputy chairmen of committee on Diaspora , Federal road safety and a member of the ECOWAS Parliament, , told the Ghanaian President at the Jubilee House, that they were in Ghana to make efforts through parliamentary diplomacy to resolve the issues at stake”