There was no point in the Speaker of parliament, Edward Doe Adjaho, recalling Members of Parliament to consider the motion filed by the Minority in parliament to have the house investigate President John Mahama for receiving a Ford Expedition gift from a Burkinabe contractor if he was going to say the motion was not admissible, Joe Osei-Owusu, Ranking Member on Parliament’s Committee on Legal, Constitutional, and Parliamentary Affairs, has said.
On Thursday September 1, the Speaker dismissed the motion filed by the Minority MPs.
In dismissing the motion, Mr Adjaho, told the house that a search by the clerk of parliament indicated that the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) had received three separate petitions concerning the same issue and was already looking into the matter.
“After a careful study of the correspondence from CHRAJ, I have come to the conclusion that the matter is not different in material, in particular from the matter under investigation by CHRAJ.”
He indicated that Article 287 of the constitution of Ghana gave CHRAJ the power to investigate matters relating to the breach of conduct involving public officers, for which reason it would not be proper for parliament to take up an issue already being investigated by another body mandated by the constitution to perform such duties.
“It is my view, therefore, that CHRAJ is the institution with exclusive constitutional authority to deal with all relevant matters relating to the breach of conduct of public officers including the matter involving the Ford Expedition vehicle,” he explained.
But speaking in an interview with Class FM’s parliamentary correspondent, Ekow Annan, after the Speaker dismissed the motion, Mr Osei-Owusu said: “…The Speaker decided before listening to us. … If it were not, why did you invite us? …In this case, we brought the application for recall contemporaneously with the motion. …The reason for asking for the recall was the motion. So, if [he] thought that the motion was inadmissible, then it was totally pointless for him to have invited us to the house to tell us the motion was inadmissible.”
He stressed: “If you thought it was inadmissible then there was no point recalling us.”