Some New Patriotic Party Members of Parliament (MP) have disagreed with comments by the Majority Leader, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, criticising the Speaker of Parliament for adjourning parliamentary proceedings on Wednesday.
Speaker Alban Bagbin adjourned sitting to enable members and himself to attend the 2023 National Development Conference held by the Church of Pentecost at the Pentecost Convention Centre, Gomoa Fetteh, to discuss national issues with government officials.
The two-day conference which comes to an end on Friday, is under the theme: ‘Moral Vision and National Development.’
Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, who spoke on the floor of Parliament on Wednesday, challenged the Speaker’s verdict and said that if care is not taken, “We may be setting some precedent that may be difficult to follow.”
He urged that Mr Bagbin be cautious so that if another religious denomination comes to invite the House, it does not set a bad precedent.
According to the Suame Constituency MP, there was no formal communication on the floor of Parliament to that effect.
But Mr Bagbin interrupted him midway through his comment and stated that there was a formal communication about the event.
“The importance of the event was hammered home by me. By the time I informed the House, I even mentioned the other dignitaries, Chief Justice, President and the House is also invited so it is not just the Speaker or the Leaders. I also called on members to participate in the proceedings. So I have done that, it is just that you were not present,” he said.
Following this, some MPs have jumped to the defence of Mr Bagbin saying there was nothing wrong with his decision.
Speaking to JoyNews after the end of day-1 of the conference, the MP for Assin South Constituency, Rev John Ntim Fordjour said that “If there’s anything that was to hold on for this event to take place, it is worth it.”
For his side, the MP for Akim Oda Constituency, Alexandar Kwesi Acquah (NPP), reiterated his colleague’s position and said that “In Parliament, some of these bills have been lagging behind because we haven’t been oriented so well because of mindset, because of our thinking too much of politics.”
MP for Obuasi East Constituency, Patrick Boakye Yiadom, also agreed with the ruling of the Speaker saying that “when he declared that there will be no sitting today, it literally means it is a national event so the Speaker was not wrong.”