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Election of Speaker of Parliament: AFAG calls for independent probe into chaos at parliament

BY: Getrude Ankah Nyavi

Pressure group, the Alliance for Accountable Governance (AFAG) has called for an independent investigation into the incidents that marred the inauguration of the 8th Parliament.

The election of the Speaker of Parliament for the 8th Parliament of the 4th Republic was characterised by chaos with the assault on a female MP who was forcefully shoved off a chair, snatching of ballot papers by Mr Carlos Ahenkorah, kicking of ballot box and polling booths by Mr John Jinapor, among others.

In a press statement issued by the leadership of AFAG on Monday, January 11, 2021, the pressure group said the happenings in Parliament `cannot be left uninvestigated.

AFAG further stated that it does not expect Parliament to conduct an impartial investigation, so it (parliament) must appoint an independent body to conduct the investigation into its misconduct.

The group said the investigation should further address the issue of the deployment of heavily armed military men into the Chamber of Parliament.

“The investigation should further address the issue of the deployment of heavily armed military men into the Chamber of Parliament. AFAG would want to know who sanctioned this deployment and for what purpose”, AFAG said in the statement

The group also stressed that the complete breakdown of law and order which resulted in several hours of chaotic scenes during the election of the Speaker for the 8th parliament was possibly the worst incident in the Chamber of Parliament of the Republic of Ghana, hence must be investigated.

The contest for the Speaker of Parliament was between the immediate past Speaker, Prof. Aaron Mike Oquaye, nominated by the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the Second Deputy Speaker, Mr Alban Bagbin, who was backed by the National Democratic Congress (NDC).

Mr Bagbin was elected as Speaker.

Also elected (per consensus) were Messrs Joseph Osei-Wusu (MP for Bekwai-NPP) as 1st Deputy Speaker and Andrew Asiamah Amoako, Independent MP for Fomena as 2nd Deputy Speaker.

Read the full statement from AFAG below

PROBE MISCONDUCT OF PARLIAMENTARIANS

The complete breakdown of law and order which resulted in several hours of chaotic scenes during the swearing-in of MP’s elect and the election of speaker for the 8th parliament is possibly the worst incident in the Chamber of Parliament of the Republic of Ghana.

Footage from the overnight confrontation showed numerous pockets of free-for-all brawls between NPP and NDC members which disrupted the night-long program.

AFAG calls for an immediate independent investigation into the incidents of the night;

– Assault on a female MP who was forcefully shoved off the chair

– Snatching and chewing of ballot papers by Hon. Carlos Ahinkrah

– Kicking of ballot box and polling booths by Hon. John Jinapor

– Unruly behaviour of Hon. Muntaka and others

AFAG does not expect Parliament to conduct an impartial investigation, so it must appoint an independent body to conduct the investigation into its misconduct. The investigation should further address the issue of the deployment of heavily armed military men into the Chamber of Parliament. AFAG would want to know who sanctioned this deployment and for what purpose.

The investigation should recommend the appropriate sanctions for all actors. The sanction should be in line with the standing orders of Parliament and the laws of the land. The honour and dignity of Parliament is at stake.

SIGNED
AFAG LEADERSHP