I Cannot Be Neutral; Bagbin Confess

Alban Bagbin, the Speaker of Parliament, has stated that as the House’s leader, he can only be impartial, not neutral.

In response to the present concerns before Parliament over the Budget and Financial Statement for 2022, the Speaker said “the concept of majority rule should give way to participatory inclusiveness.”

“Given the current changes, Parliament cannot continue to apply the old rules, procedures, culture, and conduct whilst going through the transitional period, else the march towards democracy will be halted,” Bagbin said this when the British High Commissioner to Accra, Harriet Thompson, paid a courtesy call on him.

The purpose of the visit was to gain a better understanding of the times in which Parliament finds itself, the necessity for bipartisanship, and the lessons learned. She also wanted to know how Parliament thought about the institution’s varied engagements and assistance.

The Speaker emphasized the importance of continued support for Ghana’s Parliament in order to strengthen the institution’s function and stated that only if Ghana’s democracy succeeds will democracy thrive throughout the West African sub-region.

“If Ghana fails, others would fail as well,” he said.

Bagbin called for a mutually beneficial relationship between Ghana and the United Kingdom to ensure that the two countries support one another in their national agenda.

He said Ghana’s Parliament remains committed to strengthening ties with the United Kingdom, which had existed since independence.

Commonwealth Parliamentary Association
That commitment, he said, extends to the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA), whose purpose, according to Bagbin, needs to be reconsidered.

He said that the CPA must shift from a charity to an international diplomatic organization that facilitates economic diplomacy, democracy strengthening, and the promotion of fundamental human rights among member associations. Finally, he stated, the CPA should forge forward-thinking ties between member countries and the UN.

Haruna Iddrisu, the Minority Leader in Ghana’s Parliament, saw the current makeup of the House as a unique chance for Ghana’s legislature to become more aggressive and strengthen the concept of checks and balances in the governing process.

He stressed the need for more dialogue and consensus-building between the two sides of the House in democracy in Ghana is to be sustained and the interest of the citizens served. He expressed disquiet about the constant negative attacks by the majority group targeted at the person of the Speaker and said, that will not only traduce the Speaker’s character, image, and reputation but will only make consensus building difficult to attain and impact negatively on the ethos and integrity of the House.

Source: Emmanuel Owusu Anti

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