Coalition: MPs stern on RTI Bill passage

Mr K.T. Hammond

Mr K.T. Hammond

The Media Coalition on the Right to Information Bill (RTI), has expressed misgivings about Members of Parliament (MPs) attitude in the passage of the RTI Bill into law.
It lamented over the MPs demonstration of lack of interest in the passage of the bill by their continuous absence on the floor of the House whenever the bill comes up for consideration.

In a statement released on Monday, the coalition noted that it considers the actions of the MPs as a deliberate strategy to once again frustrate the passage of the bill into law.

“Ever since Parliament returned from recess, most of the MPs are consistently absent from the chamber anytime the RTI Bill is up for consideration, it is on record only between 30 and 50 MPs are in the chamber anytime the RTI is up for consideration in the past two weeks.

“The deliberate attempts by the MPs to frustrate the passage of the RTI Bill into law, is worsened by lack of seriousness shown by the leadership of the House, bad practice is giving credence to public suspicions a number of MPs are against the passage of the bill but cannot openly say it,” the statement said.

The New Patriotic Party (NPP) MP for Adansi Asokwa, K. T Hammond, who has openly said he is against the law has taken advantage of the situation to stop the House from considering the Bill by raising the issue of quorum.

An ally, Nartey George, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) MP for Ningo-Prampram, also resorted to the quorum agenda to frustrate the consideration of the Bill.  A third of the 275 legislators, which stands at 92 are needed to form a quorum in the House.

In view of the negative trends, the coalition petitioned the leadership of Parliament to adopt extended sittings to ensure the Bill is passed before Parliament rises for the Christmas break to its surprise, the leadership of Parliament has not considered the request and did not show any seriousness as usual.

According to the coalition, “the ongoing absenteeism anytime the bill is up for consideration is unacceptable, giving credence to public suspicions a number of them are against the passage of the bill however, the Majority Leader, Osei Kyei-Mensah- Bonsu, gave the assurance the House will pass the bill into law before it rises in December, 2018”.  -kasapafmonline.com

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