Many MPs moonlighting without Speaker’s permission – Inussah Fuseini

A former Member of Parliament for Tamale Central Constituency has raised concerns over the levels of absenteeism in Parliament.

According to him, the high levels of absenteeism is worrying and have become a setback to the work of Parliament.

He said absenteeism has contributed to the routine lack of quorum on the floor of the house.

In his view, MPs are doing jobs aside from their work as lawmakers resulting in the incessant absence in the house.

“As a former member of the legislature, I am adequately informed that many MPs are moonlighting,” the former MP revealed.

He noted that in the last Parliament, there was an MP who absented himself from a full session of Parliament without permission from the Speaker.

“This is a worrying situation in the house and nobody seems to be talking about it,” he stressed.

He said more MPs are deserting the work of the house for their private businesses.

“It is the reason Parliament is all the time greeted with empty chairs when proceedings are shown on television,” he added.

The former Minister for Lands and Natural Resources said these in reaction to Speaker S.K Bagbin’s decision to refer three Majority MPs namely Ken Ohene Agyepong, MP for Assin Central, Henry Quartey, MP for Ayawaso Central and Sarah Adwoa Safo, MP for Dome-Kwabenya to the Privileges Committee for absenting themselves for 15 sitting meetings without permission.

Mr Fuseini maintained that the law says if an MP absents him or herself from 15 sitting meetings of the house, the Clerk of Parliament should write to the Electoral Commission declaring the said MP’s seat vacant in accordance with the Constitution for a by-election to be held.

He commended the Speaker’s decision to refer the absentee MPs to the Privileges Committee to ensure accountability on the floor.

“Going forward there will be some form of accountability among MPs who are members of the article 75 officeholders. How can you not be going to work and still be drawing salaries from the Consolidated Fund”? he queried.

Mr Fuseini said these on Accra-based Neat FM today, Wednesday, April 6, 2022.

Source: Classfmonline.com

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