Minority Chief Whip: Snubbing of parliament by ministers weakening legislature

Alhaji Muntaka Mubarak, the Minority Chief Whip, has slammed Ministers of State who are Members of Parliament (MPs) for joining the bandwagon to disrespect Parliament.

He decried that the continuous snubbing of Parliament by MPs who double as ministers weaken the legislature greatly saying “it is sad, It is very very sad that this is happening.”

Speaking on the floor of Parliament, Alhaji Mubarak, who is the MP for Asawase in the Ashanti Region, bemoaned the situation following the failure of Madam Elizabeth Afoley Quaye, the Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture to show up in parliament to answer questions from MPs.

“Mr Speaker, I really wish you could send the right signal to our colleagues especially those ministers who are Members of Parliament that they should be the last to be doing this to this house because they are weakening the house further,” he stressed.

The concerns of Alhaji Mubarak came in the wake of claims by MP for Ningo Prampram in the Greater Accra Region, Sam George, that some members of the House do not come to the chamber but manage to get their names on the attendance sheet of the House.

“Mr Speaker this is an honourable house of parliament, can we all be truthful to ourselves and God in the sense that if we take today’s vote and proceedings, the names marked present were present in this chamber or even at committee?

“There are some names that we can mention here that appear present every day but we have never seen them here. Even during the State of the Nation address, they don’t attend yet their names appear as being present.

“So is it that there is a way to get your name marked present even when you are not present? Maybe because I’m a first time member I have not been initiated yet, we need to look at this carefully and find a true way of marking members present whether they are in the chamber or committee level,” he stated on the floor of the House recently.

Acting on the request of the Minority Chief Whip, the Speaker of Parliament, Professor Mike Oquaye cautioned Ministers of State against showing disregard for the work of parliament and also directed the leadership of parliament to communicate to the ministers to attach a high level of seriousness to the work of the House. -starrfmonline.com

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