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Politics: Absentee MPs: Majority Leader rejects speakers ruling, threatens to challenge decision

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The Majority Leader of Parliament, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu has rejected Speaker Alban Bagbin’s ruling that gives clearance for a report from the Privileges Committee on the three absentee Members of Parliament to be discussed on the floor of Parliament.

Reacting to the Speaker’s ruling at a press conference at Parliament House on Wednesday, Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu said: “The Speaker erred in referring the matter to the House” and threatened to challenge the decision.

“I disagree with the ruling. It doesn’t sit with the constitution, and I must express my discomfort with this unfortunate ruling that has been made because it is inconsistent. We will come back with a substantive motion to challenge the ruling,” he said.

Mr Bagbin, on Wednesday, gave clearance for a report from the Privileges Committee on three absentee Members of Parliament to be tabled and debated in the House.

Mr Bagbin dismissed attempts by Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu to declare some of the seats vacant without a formal debate of the Privileges Committee’s report.

In his ruling, Mr Bagbin said: “The preliminary objection for the admissibility of the report is hereby dismissed in limine.”

However, Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu insisted that the ruling of the Speaker should have been based on the reports of the Privileges Committee.

“I am insisting that the Speaker is wrong in his understanding of the Constitution. He has taken us on an obsequious journey that is not helpful to the growth of Parliament. The matter doesn’t rest with plenary,” he said.

On July 28 2022, Mr Osei- Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, the Member of Parliament (MP) for Suame raised a preliminary objection that the Privileges Committee report on the three absentee MPs should be considered as information and not a motion.

Mr Bagbin on May 4 referred Madam Sarah Adwoa Safo, MP for Dome-Kwabenya; Mr Henry Quartey, MP for Ayawaso Central and Mr Kennedy Ohene Agyapong, MP for Assin Central to the Privileges Committee for absenting themselves from 15 sittings of the House without his permission during the First session of the Eighth Parliament.

The committee failed to achieve a consensus in its recommendations on whether absenting herself for more than the mandatory 15 days without permission warranted her seat being declared vacant.

However, before going into a recess in July, Mr Bagbin deferred his ruling on whether the Dome-Kwabenya seat should be declared vacant or not following Madam Safo’s failure to honour a meeting by the Privileges Committee on her continuous absence from Parliament.

The Majority Caucus in Parliament wants the seat declared vacant without delay in line with stated constitutional provisions.

Most MPs on the committee cited Article 97 (1) (c) of the 1992 Constitution and the Court of Appeal decision in the case of Professor Stephen Kwaku Asare v the Attorney General & 3 Ors, in this regard.

Meanwhile, the Minority MPs on the committee, however, argued that according to the principle of natural justice, the seat should not be declared vacant because Madam Safo did not provide her side of the issue to the committee.

The committee, subsequently, determined that the excuses from her two other colleagues, Mr Kennedy Agyepong and Mr Quartey, for absenting themselves were reasonable.

It was conserved that Madam Safo failed to take advantage of the numerous opportunities to explain her absence without leave.

However, per the copy of the report made available to the Ghana News Agency by a source before recess, members of the committee gave a split decision on the fate of Madam Safo.

Source: Myjoyonline

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National: 2023 Budget: TUC to reject government’s salary projection of ₵44.9m

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Deputy-General-Secretary-of-the-Trades-Union-Congress-TUC-Joshua-Ansah

After several attempts to reach an agreement with government over an increment in their base pay, the Trades Union Congress (TUC) is expected to meet government on Wednesday to finalise a deal.

But before that meeting gets underway, the Trades Union Congress is warning that it will not accept government’s projections in the 2023 Budget.

The Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, reading the 2023 Budget in Parliament projected compensation of employees at GH¢44,990 million (5.6% of GDP).

Earlier, government also proposed a 12% salary increment during the last negotiation with Organised Labour but it was turned down.

 

Speaking on JoyNews’ PM Express on Tuesday, Deputy General Secretary of TUC, Joshua Ansah stated that they would not agree to the projected figure.

According to Mr Ansah, government must expect a fight if they turn up at the meeting with the same proposal.

JoyNews/AdomNews · TUC to reject government’s salary projection in 2023 Budget
“There is no way Organised Labour is also going to accept what has been put in the budget. Well, if the government has made up its mind that it is the way it thinks that he can actually force down the throat of workers, then we are in for a big fight, because there is no way government can pay anything below what we are expecting,” he said.

He noted that Organised Labour will not compromise on their demand for 60% increment in their base pay.

Meanwhile, the President of the Ghana Medical Association, Dr. Justice Yankson says government has created a problem by not reaching an agreement with the labour unions earlier.

JoyNews/AdomNews · Dr Yankson on organised labour and government’s negotiations
He believes the current mess could have been prevented.

“These are some of the problems that sometimes we create for ourselves. We had a whole period in which we could have sorted these things, we waited to the last end. Now we can see that we are on a collition course, it is clear,” he said.

Source: Myjoyonline

 

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Politics: Wenchi High Court throws out petition against NPP MP’s 2020 election victory

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A Wenchi High Court has thrown out a petition against New Patriotic Party (NPP) legislator in the Techiman South 2020 election.

The petitioner was seeking the nullification of the poll which saw the NPP candidate, Martin Agyei Mensah Korsah, emerge victorious.

But at the hearing Wednesday, the court explained that the NDC 2020 Parliamentary candidate, Christopher Bayere, who was pursuing the matter, failed to prove the burden of petitioning.

The court was attended by some leaders of the NDC including General Secretary, Johnson Asiedu Nketia.

Wenchi High Court throws out petition against NPP MP’s 2020 election victory
He was sighted leaving the court premises a few minutes before the judgement.

The NDC Parliamentary candidate had contested the EC’s verdict which gave the NPP’s candidate victory with 49,682 votes representing 50.2 percent of the total valid votes cast, whilst the NDC’s candidate had 49,205 votes representing 49.8 percent of the total valid votes cast.

The NDC Parliamentary candidate insisted that the figures were not a true reflection of the election.

According to him, per the pink sheets of the NDC agents at each of the 267 polling stations, he garnered 50,306 votes in the Parliamentary election whilst the 1st Respondent polled 50,013 votes.

Wenchi High Court throws out petition against NPP MP’s 2020 election victory
Electoral Commission fined in 2021

In August 2021, the Electoral Commission of Ghana was fined GH¢4,000 by the court after the Court refused to grant the EC’s request for a stay of proceedings in the dispute on July 30, 2021.

Wenchi High Court throws out petition against NPP MP’s 2020 election victory
The EC’s application for a stay of proceedings was to enable it to file a motion to challenge the ruling of the Court at its previous sitting, when it granted the petitioner a motion to amend the title of the writ.

TCounsel for the EC, Emmanuel Addae said the stay of proceedings was to enable him to file supplementary statements in support of the application filed by the National Democratic Congress (NDC) candidate, Mr Christopher Beyere Baasongti.

However, reacting to the EC’s stay of proceedings, the Counsel for the petitioner, Justin Teriwajah argued that the motion was frivolous and unnecessarily geared towards delaying the adjudication of the case.

Source: Myjoyonline

 

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Football: Asamoah Gyan’s run, Bagbin’s dance and Black Stars fans’ clean-up as fans celebrate S. Korea win in style

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It was the much-needed win for Ghanaians who were largely sitting on tenterhooks for the final quarter of the game.

And from the reactions, after the South Koreans netted a quickfire double between the 58th and 61st minutes, something had to definitely happen.

Kudus rose to the occasion, found himself at the end of a Gideon Mensah cross and curled the ball past the goalkeeper to restore Ghana’s lead and eventually sealed the game for Black Stars.

Asamoah Gyan’s run, Bagbin’s dance and Black Stars fans’ clean-up as fans celebrate S. Korea win in style
The 68th-minute winner triggered a thunderous celebration across the country and on social media.

Despite late attempts from the Koreans, the game ended 3-2 with Ghana earning a vital win in Group H.

Asamoah Gyan’s run, Bagbin’s dance and Black Stars fans’ clean-up as fans celebrate S. Korea win in style
Alban Bagbin

The jubilation started right from Ghana’s legislative arm where the Speaker, Alban Bagbin was caught on camera dancing to one of the goals on the day from his office.

The ecstatic Speaker punched the air while clad in his Black Star jersey in the company of other officials of the House.

Asamoah Gyan runs

Former Black Stars captain, Asamoah Gyan was on punditry duty at SuperSports TV.

However, the ethics of being on a live set could not suppress his excitement when the deciding goal was scored.

Filled with elation, the former skipper run out of the set in jubilation shouting atop his voice.

His iconic goal celebration was his response when asked about his reaction to some moments of the game.

Fans in clean-up mode

Now, supporters of Japan’s national team have been earning praise in Qatar for their zeal toward cleanliness after each game.

This win seems to have presented Ghanaian fans with the opportunity to emulate this off-pitch tradition.

While many celebrated the win at full-time, other fans were seen moving boxes around to collect the waste left by their colleagues.

South Korea’s Son not in selfie mood

Another interesting sight came from an official from the Ghana dressing room posing for a selfie.

The subject Son Heung-min was almost in tears after his team lost at full-time.

Otto Addo’s side will now face Uruguay in their last game looking to secure qualification to the next stage of the competition.

Source: Myjoyonline

 

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