18.03.2005 General News

I have learnt my lessons - Sakyi Hughes

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Accra, March 18, GNA- Mr Ebenezer Begyina Sakyi Hughes, Speaker of Parliament on Friday said his first days as Speaker had not been smooth but he had learnt his lessons.

"It has not been at all rosy. I can recall the unfortunate situations that I encountered but we are all the wiser."

Mr Sakyi Hughes was giving his maiden closing remarks at the end of a meeting of Parliament.

Parliament adjourned on Friday after thirty-one sittings in the first meeting of the first session of the Fourth Parliament of the Fourth Republic.

He said:" Let us hope that in future we will work to enhance rather than dent the image of Parliament."

In a speech read for him, Mr Alban Bagbin, Minority Leader said the partisan attitude of the Majority necessitated certain actions from his group such as walkouts, protests and issuance of statements during the meeting.

"All these were legitimate tools available to the Minority to draw the Majority attention to fundamental issues. For it is for the public to judge whether our actions have been right or wrong." He however, said the partisan approach to decision in the House would not augur for Ghana's democracy.

"This situation must give way to a political bargaining process which should lead to some degree of political accommodation." Mr. Bagbin paid tribute to late Dr. Gibiril Adamu, MP for Asawase, who died during the meeting.

Mr. Abraham Ossei-Aidooh, Deputy Majority Leader said the House first suffered a number of problems which made many observers, particularly the uninitiated somewhat nervous and apprehensive. He called the Minority's disagreement on the election of the Speaker, which he said, had no precedent in the history of parliamentary democracy in the country.

He said however, there is a high level of co-operation between the Majority and Minority.

"It is my hope that that the bridges of co-operation and friendship that are visibly emerging across the divide in the House for various purposes will help this Parliament blossom and the boundaries of unbridled partisanship will crumble."

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