MPs must educate constituents

Afenyo-MarkinThe Member of Parliament for Ewutu Constituency in the Central Region, Alexander Afenyo-Markin, has admitted that failure to educate their consti-tuents on their roles has given rise to concerns about their usefulness to the state.

Mr. Afenyo-Markin said it was essential for the public to appreciate the role of the parliamentarian in order for the state to make resources available for them to function effectively.

Sections of the Ghanaian public are of the view that the nation has not gotten value for the money spent to maintain MPs in office for four years. Some say the MPs have under-performed, mainly because they are unable to sponsor development projects to their constituencies.

But speaking, the Effutu MP said although the public impression about MPs was misplaced, they themselves have not been able to openly discuss their roles as well as challenges that inhibit the discharge of those obligations.

According to him, the primary role of the MP is to make laws for institutions and perform oversight roles for state agencies. The other ‘unofficial’ role he noted was having to act as agents of development which has rather become the major yardstick with which their performance is measured by the public.

“In the past we have not been able to communicate well with our constituents or the populace for them to appreciate the role we play,” Mr. Afenyo-Markin explained yesterday.

“I would encourage my entire colleague MPs to confront this issue. We talk about corruption; if MPs are not well paid well, then obviously you are likely to be compromised. So it is important irrespective of cost to the public purse, we should discuss it for people to appreciate that those in public service have a role to play and the state must make reasonable provision to enable them function effectively,” he advised.

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