Joe Osei-Owusu picked as First Deputy Speaker of Parliament

BY: Enoch Darfah Frimpong
Mr Joe Osei-Wusu

The Member of Parliament for Bekwai in the Ashanti region, Mr Joe Osei-Owusu has been proposed as the First Deputy Speaker of Parliament.

In a radio interview confirming his selection by the Majority side in the next Parliament beginning January 7, 2017 Mr Osei-Owusu said: “I must say that the discussion has gone on for some time now, it’s been back and forth. Very senior members actually talked me into coming into that position."

"I haven’t seen myself in that area but they persuaded me that I’m capable and I’m proud that they found me capable.”

On how he intends to work as a Speaker in the absence of the substantive, he said: “Infact that was what was intimidating me when it was suggested to me….I think I’m capable, I must psyche myself to it."

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He would be confirmed in his new role at dawn on Saturday January 7, 2017.

For Mr Osei-Owusu, he never thought that he had a career in the Legislator, rather he always thought he belonged to the Executive and that was where his hopes were.

The Speaker superintends over meetings of Parliament and on what Mr Osei-Owusu would seek to bring to the Deputy Speaker position, he mentioned “strict fairness, firm rules, firm interpretation and application of the rules of debates in Parliament and a real desire to see a new image of Parliament.”

“A Parliament which people see us as effectively checking the Executive actions and ensuring that there is absolute faith in the people’s representatives.” 

Mr Osei-Owusu went to Parliament in 2009 as an independent candidate. This was after he was unsuccessful in securing the slot of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) at its primary in April 2007.

The then incumbent MP, Mr. Ignatius Kofi Poku Edusei, who was a Deputy Minister of Local Government, Rural Development and Environment at the time beat him.

But Mr Osei-Owusu, who had worked as Chief Executive of the Driver and Vehicular Licensing Authority (DVLA) during President John Kufuor's era went ahead to contest the Parliamentary elections as an independent candidate and won against the NPP incumbent.

Following that, he served his first term - 2009 to 2012 returned to Parliament in 2013 on the ticket of the NPP and would also be going for his third term from January 7, 2017, representing the people of Bekwai.

Osei-Owusu is a lawyer and holds a BA (Classics and Law) from the University of Ghana, a Barrister of Law from the Ghana School of Law (GSL) and an Executive Masters in Governance and Leadership (EMGL) from the Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration.

Prof Mike Ocquaye has been proposed as the Speaker of Parliament in the next Parliament.

The Majority side has also selected Mr Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, Member of Parliament for Suame as the Majority Leader to be deputized by Sarah Adwoa Sarfo, Member of Parliament for Dome Kwabenya in Greater Accra.

On the Minority side, Mr Alban Sumana Bagbin, MP for Nadowli/Kaleo has been proposed as the Second Deputy Speaker.

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