Politics

Bagbin Calls Joe Wise’s Objection Of The COVID Fund Probe Unconstitutional, Illegal, And Offensive

The Speaker of Parliament, Alban Sumana Bagbin has described Joe Osei Owusu’s ruling which kicked against the motion for a thorough probe into the use of COVID-19 funds, as unconstitutional, illegal and offensive.

Infuriated Bagbin called out the First Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Joe Osei Owusu for his “penchant” attitude of upending the substantive Speaker’s rulings whenever he steps in the acting position.

“The decision of the first deputy Speaker to upend my admission of the motion and rule the motion should not have been admitted in the first place. Honourable Members, it is interesting to know that this is the second time the first deputy speaker has taken the chair and has made a ruling whose effect was to overrule a decision I had earlier on established before the house.”

Despite that, Bagbin refused to overrule the “unconstitutional” ruling of Joe Wise.

“The penchant of the first deputy speaker to overrule my rulings is unconstitutional, illegal and offensive, be that as it may, I shall not take any step to overrule the decision of the first deputy speaker to dismiss the motion approved by the ranking member of the finance committee”, Bagbin said addressing the parliamentary chamber which had a handful of MPs present.

The speaker referenced that the rulings of the substantive Speaker cannot be tampered with by any of the deputy Speakers and vice versa.

Nevertheless, Bagbin said he will deliberate with his deputies on how to present a more coherent and uniform structure in respect of rulings so that the House will be guided at all times during deliberation.

Background (Source: Starfm)

First Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Joseph Osei-Owusu, rejected a motion by the Minority for a thorough investigation into the use of Covid-19 funds.

The motion was moved by Ranking Member for the Finance Committee, Cassiel Ato Forson who prayed the house to constitute a bi-partisan Parliamentary Committee to be chaired by a member of the Minority Caucus.

The Committee would be tasked to enquire into the expenditures made by the Ghana Government in relation to Covid-19 since the outbreak of the pandemic in 2020.

In moving the motion Dr. Ato Forson argued the government has been incoherent in accounting for Covid-19 funds.

The Minority Chief Whip, Muntaka Mubarak, in seconding the motion pointed out that the government deliberately scattered information about Covid-19 expenditure in the 2022 budget in order to evade accountability.

Deputy Majority Leader, Alexander Afenyo-Markin however, raised preliminary objection arguing the move will amount to parliament usurping the powers of the Auditor-General as prescribed by the constitution.

He accused the NDC MPs of an attempt to confuse Ghanaians and paint the government black. The Effutu MP, therefore, asked the first Deputy Speaker to throw out the motion.

Minority leader, Haruna Iddrisu rejected the assertion from the Deputy Majority Leader arguing what the NDC MPs want to be done is inquiry and not an audit.

Majority Leader, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu also kicked against any such move of a probe into the use of Covid-19 funds.

Source: opemsou.com/Hajara Fuseini

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