Cletus Avoka shoots down motion on reversal of absentee MPs’

Cletus Avoka, the Member of Parliament (MP) for Zebilla East in the Upper East Region, has shoot down the Minority Chief Whip’s decision to file a motion for a reversal of the three MPs to the Privileges Committee of Parliament.

He observed that “Alhaji Mohammed-Mubarak Muntaka, the Minority chief Whip rushed into filing the motion in calling for a reversal of the referral of the three MPs to the Privileges Committee for absenting themselves for more than15 sittings”.

The three MPs were Adwoa Safo, the MP for Dome/Kwabenya Constituency, Henry Quartey, the MP for Ayawaso West Constituency both in the Greater Accra Region and Kennedy Agyapong, the MP for Assin Central Constituency in the Central Region.

Mr. Avoka indicated that Alhaji Muntaka’s decision to file the motion, without extensive engagement with the leadership of the Minority Caucus was not appropriate since he rushed and should have conducted extensive engagements which would have provided the opportunity for legal considerations.

“I think Muntaka is rushing too much because I thought when the House adjourned, there should have been a caucus meeting to discuss the way forward on whether we should present a motion or not, to rescind the Speaker’s decision,” he asserted and wondered whether the motion would yield results since it was filed by an individual and not the Minority Caucus.

In the motion, Alhaji Muntaka called on Parliament to revoke, cancel or rescind the referral made by the Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin on April 5, 2022, to the Privileges Committee of Parliament to consider the issue of absence without permission from the House under Article 97 (1) (c) of the 1992 Constitution and the Standing Orders 15 and 16 of the House.

Per Article 97(1)(c) of the 1992 Constitution, a Member of Parliament shall vacate his seat if he or she is absent, without the permission in writing of the Speaker, and he or she is unable to offer a reasonable explanation to the Parliamentary Committee on Privileges from 15 sittings of a meeting of Parliament during any period that Parliament has been summoned to meet and continues to meet. –citinewsroom.com

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