"Sir John-Nketia Friendship Must Teach Us Not To Hate Each Other Because Of Politics" – Speaker, As Parliament Mourns
Parliament has observed a minute’s silence in honour of the memory of the late Kwadwo Owusu Afriyie popularly known as Sir John.
The CEO of the Forestry Commission succumbed to COVID-19 at the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital Wednesday night.
Paying tribute to him on the floor of Parliament on Thursday, 2 July 2020, Speaker Mike Oquaye said: “His wonderful relationship with Hon Asiedu Nketia [General Secretary of the National Democratic Congress]” should be an example.
“They were very very vocal in their days as secretaries general but very good friends because when one’s mother died, the other went to spend days with him and their relationship should be an example that we should not be fighting or hating each other because we belong to different political persuasions”, Prof Oquaye said, adding: “Sometimes, even our own internal fights show a lot of hostility and we don’t need these things”.
“That is worthy to say about him and his colleague Asiedu Nketia and may these examples continue to inspire the political atmosphere to good conduct. May he rest in peace”, the Speaker added, after which the house observed a minute’s silence in the former New Patriotic Party General Secretary’s honour.
Also, Minority Leader Haruna Iddrisu, on behalf of his Caucus, said: “Mr Speaker, I extend to the family, our profound sympathies and condolences and to the NPP. Mr Speaker, his sudden departure has taken away from the Ghanaian politics, his high sense of humour which is always accompanied with a smile even as he jabbed”.
For his part, Majority Leader Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, said “Owusu Afriyie was a very affable personality who registered his presence strongly in the political space of the party”, adding: “He was an affable personality who really, positively affected everyone he came into contact with”.
The Suame MP said Sir John’s passing must demonstrate to Ghanaians how serious the and real the COVID-19 pandemic is.
“Mr Speaker, on this occasion, I think it is important to remind all of us that this ailment is, indeed, real, very devastating. I believe that what the transition of Owusu Afriyie signifies should urge us all to be very conscious of our existence and the fact of the rampaging effect of COVID-19”, Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu noted.