I Fear For The Lives Of My Members Who Were Misreported As Absent – Minority Leader
Minority Leader in Parliament, Haruna Iddrisu, says he is scared for the lives of Members of Parliament under his wing who were reported absent on Tuesday by the Clerk of Parliament, Cyril Kwabena Nsiah.Speaking on the floor of Parliament on Thursday, Mr Iddrisu explained that
the false absence of MPs has endangered their lives as their constituents may feel betrayed by them for not standing with them in this matter due to media reports. “Mr Speaker, we take strong political objection because of the political fortunes of my colleagues who have mistakenly
been reported as absent,” he said. He added that “Mr Speaker, we think the Clerk and the Clerk at the table owe us an explanation as a Caucus and in particular to the NDC MPs affected because if we don’t respond to this, you are contributing to the decline of their fortunes in their constituencies.
This comes after, the General Secretary of the opposition NDC, Johnson Asiedu Nketia, accused the Clerk of Parliament, Cyril Kwabena Nsiah of tampering with vital evidence to be used by the Minority in challenging the one-sided approval of the e-levy bill. Mr. Asiedu Nketia argued that the
Clerk who keeps possession of the true records of the House, deliberately marked about eight NDC MPs as absent, in spite of the said MPs being present in the chamber. “How come these people [the eight MPs] will all of a sudden be marked absent when they actually were there and
everybody saw them? They signed the attendance sheet and I have spoken to them. They signed the attendance sheet so it tells you that somebody somewhere is tampering with evidence,” he said The Minority Group also demanded an explanation from the clerk on why their walkout was not
recorded. According to Mr Iddrisu, Standing Order 53 says business institute of the day as decided by the Business Committee shall be set out in the order paper and shall whenever be transacted in the following order: prayers; oaths; address by the President; Message given by the President; Formal
communication by the Speaker and then it goes in item 8 53 (1) )(h ) Correction of Votes and Proceedings and Official Reports.However, what was “conspicuously lost on this order paper. So is the correction of votes and procedures so Mr Speaker, it cannot be mere coincidence”, he said
Meanwhile, Speaker of Parliament, Alban Kingsford Bagbin, has asked the Minority in Parliament to desist from accusing the Clerk of Parliament of being partisan for wrongly marking some NDC legislators as absent from proceedings on Tuesday. He said it was a “grievous error” on
the part of the Clerk, but he does not believe it was done to spite MPs of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC). “Being the Speaker and having the ultimate responsibility, I will take responsibility and apologise sincerely to members for this error,” the Speaker said on Thursday.