Exit of seasoned MPs not good for Ghana’s democracy – Bagbin

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The Speaker of Parliament, Rt Hon. Alban Sumana Kingsford Bagbin, has expressed great concern about the exit of some experienced sitting members of parliament from both the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the National Democratic Congress (NDC) caucuses of the house.

Many sitting Members of Parliament (28 in total) lost their candidatures in the recent NPP primaries held on January 27, whereas 17 MPs lost their parliamentary bid in the NDC primaries held last year.

Moreover, in the lead-up to the NPP primaries, 19 sitting MPs of the governing party made the decision not to run for reelection, while five NDC MPs did the same last year.

The nation will suffer as a result of the significant loss of investment that has been made in the exiting MPs, Mr. Bagbin stressed.

Speaking to the members of the legislature during his welcome address, the Speaker said that this does not bode well for legislation pertaining to Ghana’s democratic growth.

“Honourable members, the primaries are part of the process for the electorate to determine who represents them in parliament. However, the case of voluntary discontinuance of 5 and 19 followed by this election of 17 and 28 is not a good signal for the legislation and for Ghana’s democratic development,” said Speaker Bagbin.

He underlined the significance of losing seasoned Members of Parliament after just one term in office and urged political parties to address this issue internally.

“I want to appeal to the political parties to take this matter up seriously because the investment that is made in an individual MP is so huge for the nation just to always go waste after every four years,” the Speaker added.

To safeguard certain incumbent Members of Parliament, Majority Leader Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu on his part, urged political parties to examine their internal election procedures.

According to him, the methods and processes used by political parties to choose their nominees have an impact on how effectively and efficiently Parliament runs its operations.

Parliament resumed sitting on February 6 after a short break. The First Meeting of the Fourth Session of the 8th Parliament was scheduled to start at 10:00 am prompt.

During this meeting a total of 82 Bills are expected to be presented to the House,” Parliament said in a statement dated February 5, 2024.

Amongst the bills the house will be considering are the Aged Persons Bill, 2023,
Advertising Council Bill, 2023; Consumer Protection Bill, 2023; Public University Bill, as well as the 2023 Ghana Road Fund (Amendment) Bill, 2023.

Source: Citi Newsroom

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