Following the latest developments around the failed NPP Government’s Economic Policy and Financial Statement for the 2022 financial year, the National Democratic Congress in the Upper West Region is appalled by concerted efforts to undermine the Rt. Hon. Speaker of Parliament, denigrate him and draw his enviable stature into disrepute.
NPP Majority Leader
We are convinced beyond every reasonable doubt that, such a concerted diabolic agenda is emanating from the now discredited Hon. Osei Kyei Mensah Bonsu (Majority Leader) and self- proclaimed “long-standing friend” of the Venerable Speaker of Parliament. It is shameful that, he and his assigns seek to pursue this dishonorable agenda by engaging acolytes across the country, whom they use as proxies to inundate both traditional and social media channels with fabricated articles targeted at denting the person of the Speaker and bringing that high office into disrepute.
We have carefully monitored the conduct of the NPP in Parliament led by the battle weary Hon. Kyei Mensah Bonsu. We are convinced that his scornful disposition against Speaker Bagbin isn’t just underpinned by political differences. His unmitigated arrogance towards the Speaker appears laced with ethnic bigotry and sheer envy. We are not quite surprised though as we all know that this has always been the character and disposition of the NPP towards political elites of northern descent even including northerners within their own fold.
NPP General Secretary and False Publications
Our attention has been drawn to a publication by Starrfm.com.gh (24/11/21) where Mr. John Boadu, the NPP General Secretary is reported to have launched a scathing attack on the person of Mr. Speaker while speaking to Party supporters at Mankessim. He is reported to have described the speaker as one suffering inferiority complex simply because our sagacious Speaker had lawfully pointed out the unlawfulness in the Roads and Highways Minister’s unpopular decision to unilaterally suspend road tolls in respect of proposals of a budget policy statement that was yet to receive parliamentary approval. Not only do we consider Mr. John Boadu’s outburst as sheer madness and arrogance, but we also see it as an explosion of his innate burning hatred or scorn towards the Speaker and also, a naked display of abject ignorance of the laws governing this country. No wonder our dear country is now lawless and ungovernable!
We are also aware of series of other false publications written by surrogates of the NPP directly attacking the personality of the Speaker. And even to the extent of attacking his spouse and family as well with maliciously fabricated and recycled lies seeking to denigrate the dignity and impeccable track record of the Speaker and his family. We wish to advise the general public to ignore such fabrications and discard them with the impunity that they deserve. We are however, sending a strong warning to all those unscrupulous characters behind that agenda to immediately put an end to it or face our wrath.
Misuse of Public Funds
On allegations of misuse of public funds, we wish to emphatically state that, the Rt. Hon. Speaker of Parliament at all times has remained sensitive and conscious of the precarious state of the Ghanaian economy. Under no circumstance can he ever be cited for ostentatious spending.
His recent travel with a carefully pruned entourage to Dubai for a routine medical review is part of his entitlement as Speaker of Parliament; just like previous Speakers and other high ranking state officials of his stature have accessed and continue to access. We rather applaud the prudence with which Mr. Speaker is using this facility; unlike the naked profligacy and accusation of debauchery being levelled against the President who appears to be over exploiting these very same privileges without let or hindrance. Mr. Speaker does not at all belong to this class of tin gods who continue to lord it over all of us in total disregard of the long suffering masses of our people. Indeed, it is instructive to note that, throughout his twenty-eight years of parliamentary service, the Rt. Hon. ASK Bagbin never accessed the privilege of medical service abroad though he was entitled to it as a member of parliament and though several of his colleague MPs has accessed it. We therefore wish to state that attacks on Mr. Speaker on accessing a constitutionally guaranteed privilege are misplaced and a calculated attempt to court public ridicule against the Speaker. Recall that out of shame, one of the better known NPP publications has already pulled down a story seeking to suggest that a certain quantum of money in US Dollars has already been spent by Mr. Speaker. They shall choke on their own lies! We challenge Hon. Kyei Mensah Bonsu (the hidden face behind this evil agenda) to tell Ghanaians how much the state through parliament spent cumulatively on his medical bills.
The Rt. Hon. Bagbin - An Unmatched Colossus in Parliamentary Practice
It is trite knowledge that, the Rt. Hon. A.S.K. Bagbin served the Parliament of Ghana for twenty- eight unadulterated years as a member of the house, rising through the ranks to where he sits today, deservedly serving as Speaker of the 8th Parliament – a hung Parliament which is a novelty in the history of Ghana’s Constitutional Democracy. Under no circumstances in all these years of service to mother Ghana, has Mr. Speaker’s impeccable character or competence been brought to question. The Rt. Hon Bagbin in all instances has acted creditably. His yet unequalled depth of experience and towering stature in governance and the rule of law have carved for him an enviable niche throughout Africa and beyond as far as parliamentary democracy is concerned. It is thus unfathomable that, Hon Kyei Mensah Bonsu and his NPP assigns will think that, fallacious fabrications, mudslinging, defamations of character and naked insubordination can bolster their ill-bred agenda to destroy the peerless reputation of the Speaker.
The NPP Majority Group have themselves to Blame
We are bewildered that the NPP, rather than blaming the historic rejection of the 2022 budget statement on failed leadership and tactical bankruptcy on their part, they choose to heap all sorts of blame on Mr. Speaker. While it became obvious that, the Minority Group led by the astute Haruna Iddrisu deployed a superior strategy with a better organized side to throw out the widely unpopular 2022 budget, the Majority Group led by Osei Kyei Mensah Bonsu displayed leadership paralysis, a disorganized and headless front where first timers could command them sheepishly out of the chamber after their own leaders had incompetently called for a division of the house in respect of voting to approve or disapprove the now ill-fated 2022 budget statement. Monitoring the proceedings of the day, one could not, but come to a conclusion that, indeed Mr. Speaker is living by his oath to be impartial and at all times act in the interest of the constitution and people of Ghana without fear or favour. He had even been so charitable with the Majority Group by keeping the doors wide open on the day’s proceedings for over three hours; more than adequate room for the limping majority front to galvanize their numbers. But their obvious failure in the face of all these opportunities is a direct indication that, the loquacious Osei Kyei Mensah Bonsu is a spent force and has outlived his usefulness as a Leader of his group. Having clearly demonstrated that the NPP government is shamelessly unable to carry their own load, we encourage them to blame themselves and not their head pad. They should therefore be advised to rather channel their frustrations at their leadership in parliament. They should put stop to pouring empty threats and vituperations at the Speaker who acted perfectly in tandem with the constitution of Ghana and standing orders of parliament.
Against this backdrop, we find the conduct of the Hon. Joe Owusu and the Majority Caucus of Parliament relating to proceedings in the house on Tuesday, the 30th of November, 2021 as reprehensible, unlawful and a direct attack on the Office of the Speaker of Parliament. It is instructive to note that, the Hon Osei Kyei Mensah Bonsu acting in cahoots with Hon Joe Owusu sought to exploit the absence of the Speaker to stage a “coup” against him in furtherance of their deeply engrained ethnic hatred against the Speaker.
We appreciate the Minority Group in Parliament for openly condemning it and declaring it as a constitutional nullity. Let it be emphasized herein that Mr. Speaker, in presiding over proceedings in the house on November 26th (a sitting that occasioned the lawful rejection of the 2022 budget), acted lawfully and demonstrated commendable heights of impartiality. The votes and proceedings of that day’s sitting supported by the Standing Orders of Parliament and the Constitution of Ghana, all vindicate the position of the Speaker thus, making him blameless and not deserving of the viciousness brewed against him by the NPP and their surrogates. The question that is rather yelling for answers from the Majority Group is why they would call for a division in the house and run away from their own request.
30th November, 2021 - A Dark Day in Ghana’s Democracy
In conclusion, we deem the events of 30th November, 2021 as a Dark Day in our enviable democratic record, where the Rule of Man seems to supersede the Rule of Law! The conduct of Hon. Joe Owusu, acting in flagrant disregard of order 109 (1,2 and 3) is much reprehensible and must be out rightly condemned by all disciples of constitutional democracy.
…Signed… Kaminta Eunice
Deputy Regional Communications Officer