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Bagbin defends his decision concerning Adwoa Safo’s case

Bagbin defends his decision concerning Adwoa Safo’s case

Alban Bagbin, the Speaker of Parliament, has defended his decision to refer the matter involving Dome-Kwabenya Member of Parliament Sarah Adwoa Safo to the plenary for a debate.

At a press conference in Parliament, the speaker explained that he investigated the Privileges Committee’s sittings but was dissatisfied with what he discovered, prompting him to ask the House to debate the matter.

“I went behind the scenes to investigate what happens at committee meetings, and I am not satisfied,” he said.

Suleman Adamu Sanid, the New Patriotic Party (NPP) lawmaker for Ahafo Ano North in the Ashanti Region, is challenging the decision in the Supreme Court.

Mr. Adamu Sanid has petitioned the Supreme Court to declare Mr. Bagbin’s ruling unconstitutional, null and void, and without effect.

On Thursday, October 27, he filed the suit in the Supreme Court.

According to him, the Speaker violated the provisions and procedures outlined in Article 97c of the 1992 constitution, which states that “a member of Parliament shall vacate his seat in Parliament if he is absent, without the permission in writing of the Speaker, and he 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.”

Mr Bagbin ruled that the removal or not of Dome Kwabenya Member of Parliament Sarah Adowa Safo will be debated in Parliament.

Speaker Bagbin stated in Parliament on Wednesday, October 26, that “the house is well within its right to receive and consider the committee’s report and make a determination.”

“It is my decision that the motion was properly admitted.”

However, Majority Leader Osei Kyei Mensah Bonsu was dissatisfied with the ruling.

“The speaker is completely wrong in his understanding of the law,” said the Suame lawmaker, “which is why I repeated that he has sent us on a very obsequious path, which doesn’t help Parliament.”

Sarah Adwoa Safo was absent for more than the allotted 15 days.

The Majority caucus wanted her seat declared vacant, but the Minority caucus felt she should be heard first.

The Speaker also questioned the New Patriotic Party (NPP) MPs’ authority to declare her seat vacant.

Majority Leader Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu revealed in March that Sarah Adwoa Safo had requested a month’s leave from the House.

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Following that, the Speaker referred her case, as well as those of two other MPs, Henry Quartey of Ayawaso Central and Kennedy Agyapong of Assin Central, to the Privileges Committee for hearing.

Speaker Bagbin, who postponed ruling on the issue before parliament went on recess, has promised to do so when it reconvenes.

The Speaker noted in a formal communication to the House on Tuesday that because there were few things to transact immediately after the assumption, he deferred the ruling to Wednesday.


Source: BBC

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