A former Clerk to Parliament, Samuel Ntim Darkwa has asked the Speaker of Parliament Alban Bagbin to schedule his time in a manner that will make him available when crucial decisions are going to be taken in the House.
Mr Ntim Darkwa said if he constantly travels out of the country when critical decisions are going to be taken by lawmakers, it will raise suspicions about his intentions.
Speaking in interview with TV3’s Komla Kluste on happenings in the 8th Parliament, he said “Even before he became deputy speaker he was doing that then you cant blame, that one we cant blame him.
“All that we could say is that when crucial matters are going to be taken he must ensure that he is presence at least for one one day, his presence in the house is necessary. If consistently, they are going to take crucial matters and you are going for medical checks people might become suspicious about your intentions.
“You schedule your progremms in such a way that when they are going to take a crucial decision on this day, you stay one day to take that decision then you go away after that. But as soon as they are going to take the decision and you go away it will raise suspicion.”
The Majority in Parliament accused Speaker of deliberately frustrating attempts by the government to get crucial policies approved.
The Majority Leader Osei Kyei Mensah Bonsu had expressed his disappointment in Mr Bagbin over the way and manner he conducted himself in Parliament on Monday December 20.
According to him, Mr Bagin, for instance, left Parliament to his home on Monday December 20, 2021 during proceedings without communicating to the Second Deputy Speaker whom he handed over to.
He described this as unfortunate.
Speaking to journalists on Tuesday December 21, 2021, the Suame lawmaker said “He said he will come here at 11: 30 , subsequently another message came to say that he can only be here at 12 . I mean, the house cannot be held to ransom by one person. It is most unfortunate.
“Yesterday leaving the seat he told the First the First Deputy that he was handing over to, that he will come back pretty soon and all that we heard was that he had left to his house, that is mots unfortunate without any further communication to the Second deputy Speaker or to me because I have been having some discussions with him and I am told today, that he didn’t even have any discussion with the Minority as well so where are we going from where. It is most unfortunate development.”
This situation resulted in fights on Monday December 20 when lawmakers could not hold their emotions.
Some exchanged brawls in the House just before the final vote on the controversial Electronic Transfer Levy Bill, also known as e-levy.
The sit-in Speaker, Joseph Osei-Owusu, had announced that a division would be followed to approve the Bill, that was presented under a certificate of urgency, and he was going to vote as well in his capacity as a Member of Parliament.
That appeared to have provoked the National Democratic Congress (NDC) members, who questioned his decision to vote after presiding over the night’s proceedings.
They moved to the front of the dais, issuing threats at the Bekwai MP.
This got the Majority MPs to also start agitations and immediately Mr Osei-Owusu handed the presiding role to the Second Deputy Speaker, Andrew Amoako Asiamah, the fight broke out.