Speaker of Parliament Mr Alban Sumana Kingsford Bagbin has pointed out that people cannot fix themselves by breaking others, bemoaning what is usually referred to as ‘Pull Him Down’ syndrome or destruction of individuals in the country.
He said it is therefore expedient for Ghanaians to listen to one another with the intent to understand and not to reply to feedback being delivered.
Delivering his opening remarks yesterday when the House commenced sitting of the second meeting of the first session of the 8th Parliament, Speaker Bagbin noted that this particular recess had been a period of prayer and supplication and a period of deep reflection and introspection.
This, he said, is based on the fact that the nation went through the Ramadan fasting and celebrated Easter and holy communion during the period.
Ghana, he said, is an overly spiritual and religious country and prayed that God has answered the prayers and supplications of Ghanaians and has changed their leaders to be better leaders.
“I pray He will also grant us good health, open and good hearts to listen to each other with the intent to understand, ” he said.
The Speaker acknowledged that Parliamentary recesses are very stressful but healthy periods in the life of an MP.
He stressed that these are not sedentary moments but agile and mobile moments, a Johnny Walker season where MPs visit their constituents.
He expressed hope that the visits to the communities and the people have exposed members a lot more to the reality of the life of the ordinary Ghanaian and have come prepared to better represent the people of the nation.
Speaker Bagbin indicated that the meeting promises to be a very busy one and that apart from seeing to an early passage of the new Standing Orders of Parliament, the House is expected to consider and pass into law a number of important bills.
“These include the Petroleum Revenue Management Amendment Bill 2021, The Supplementary Appropriation Bill 2020, the Exemptions Bill 2021 and a number of private member’s bills whilst we anxiously await the presentation of the all-important Affirmative Action Bill. The latest information has it that the Affirmative Action Bill is before cabinet”, he pointed out.
Mr Bagbin noted that many private member’s motions and international agreements, treaties and conventions are also waiting for consideration of the House.
Minority leader, Haruna Iddrisu, in his remarks issued a strong warning to Deputy ministerial nominees who he claimed have started performing the duties of Deputy Ministers to stop.
According to him, once they have not been vetted by Parliament as stipulated by the 1992 Constitution, they attend to duties of the positions at their own peril.
The Minority leader also expressed displeasure at the impasse between the Wesley Girls Secondary School and Muslim parents over refusal of the school to allow Muslim students to observe the Ramadan fast.
He noted that religious freedom is a provision in the Constitution of the Republic and stressed the need for all to respect that provision and also respect the religious freedoms of Ghanaians of other religious persuasions.
Majority leader, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, in his contribution acknowledged the load of work on the House and indicated this has been compounded by the fact the period for the meeting has been shortened by two weeks.
He urged colleagues to therefore exert more energy than expected in order to ensure the House approves the bills and motions scheduled for the period before the House rises sine die.