There was drama at the Parliament’s Public Accounts Committee (PAC) sitting when the Gender, Children and Social Protection Minister, Nana Oye Lithur was attacked by a former Director for the Department of Children, Mariama Yahaya.
Responding to a question regarding an unaccounted Ghc14,000 flagged by the Auditor General, Oye Lithur blamed the former director.
She disclosed “The ministry wrote to the former director of the department of children and we requested her to assist in addressing the issue but she has not responded despite several visits and several letters and reminders.”
With that explanation, the sector ministry said the former director has some money for her travel expenses still with them and pleaded the Committee to give her the permission to use the money to settle the debt.
But few minutes into the hearing, the former Director Mariama Yahaya, who was watching the proceedings on television, barged into the conference room to accuse the minister of arbitrarily interdicting her and replacing her with someone else.
“The Hon. Minister,” she said, “wrongfully interdicted me.”
According to her, “I was reinstated by the Civil Service Council so I am still the director for the department of children.”
She disclosed that as at the time the Auditors went through the Department’s account books, she had been replaced with someone else.
“So I had the privilege to be called to come there and I went to explain to the Auditors that that Ghc14,000 was for interviews I conducted,” she said.
She told the Chairman of PAC that “All the receipts were in my cabinet and the Minister had changed the lock to my office when I got there.”
She said if she had been granted access to the office, she would have provided the necessary receipts covering the expenditure to the Auditors.
Mariama Yahaya was later to disclose to the media that she has sued the minister over the way she maltreated her.