Deputy Majority leader in Parliament Alexander Afenyo-Markin has stated that the New Patriotic Party (NPP) in Parliament will not kowtow to the Minority National Democratic Congress (NDC) in delaying government business in the legislature.
According to him, since the induction of the 8th Parliament, the Minority has consistently claimed the Majority NPP needs the cooperation of the NDC to conduct government business in the House.
“I beg to defer for the simple reason that in this governance system, it is not about the NPP, it is about the country.
“Therefore working together as the people’s representatives is a sin qua non mandate. We should therefore not take it that ‘it is your government and you need us.’ We need each other”, Mr Afenyo-Markin stated.
Speaking at the opening ceremony of the second part of the orientation for Members of Parliament on Saturday, Mr. Afenyo-Markin advised the Minority not to approach the object of consultation with predetermined agenda adding, “And that if you don’t I will hoodwink you.”
The NPP and the NDC in Parliament, he said, must learn to work together.
According to him, the uniqueness of the 8th Parliament is a clear opportunity for the two parties to demonstrate to the world that Ghanaians are tolerant and will not be limited by bipartisan political views.
Responding to an earlier call by the Minority leader, Haruna Iddrisu, for the quality of debate on the House floor to improve, the Deputy Majority leader urged colleagues to conduct more research into subjects that come to the House for discussion and take advantage of the tools available to them to build their capacities.
In his opening remarks, the Minority leader argued the 8th Parliament is unique in that the two political parties command 137 seats each, and described it as a hung Parliament.
This, he said, means the House has to navigate the country’s governance processes with more tact and more understanding.
“Like it or not, accept it or not consensus and cooperation will necessarily become our working tools.
“We will have to cooperate more and will have to build consensus more on the issues that affect the Ghanaian people,” he said.
He stressed that this is not a Parliament where the NPP has comfort and could therefore claim to do as it wishes without support and cooperation from the minority.
The ruling party, he said, will need the NDC caucus’ cooperation and support in order to be able to govern.
He assured the country, however, that the minority will not be an obstructionist group but will be constructive, detailed and diligent but will demand accountability where necessary.