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Osei Kyei Mensah- Bonsu goofed on Bagbin turning Parliament into NDC enclave

Wed, 7 Apr 2021 Source: Kwesi Atuahene

Osei Kyei Mensah- Bonsu, the majority leader and minister in charge of the parliamentary affairs of the 8th parliament, goofed on his comment about Bagbin turning Parliament into an enclave for the NDC.

The members of the Parliamentary service board are the Minister of Parliamentary Affairs and Leader of Government Business in Parliament, Mr. Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, the Minority Leader, Mr. Haruna Iddrisu, Mr. Abraham Osei Aidoo, who is a former New Patriotic Party (NPP) Member of Parliament and former Majority Leader. Also on the board is the Clerk of Parliament, Mr. Cyril Nsiah and Mr. Aseidu Nketia, General Secretary of the NDC.

The Parliamentary Service Board is chaired by the Speaker of Parliament, Mr. Bagbin, who happens to be the person clothed with the authority to appoint the other four persons not six as widely reported, who together with the Clerk-to-Parliament constitute the Parliamentary Service Board.

To set the records straight, the former Parliamentary Service Board had Hon. Hackman Owusu- Agyeman as a core member of the board, fast forward, he was the chairman of the council of Elders of the New Patriotic Party (NPP).

The concept of intrusion into the governance of parliament is beyond just the appointment of Asiedu Nketia as a member of the board. To a greater extent, the very existence of the ministry of Parliamentary affairs could be the biggest intrusion into the governance of parliament.

The board is mandated to seek the welfare of members and staff of Parliament as well as promote other interests of the Legislature.

Its presence allows Parliament to undertake various procurement activities to ensure the smooth running of the Legislature.

Thus, during the absence of the board for this current Parliament, a number of persons who had duly been interviewed for employment into the Parliament Service had their recruitment suspended as their term of conditions of service could not be determined by the board.

I strongly belief that promoting consensus building among the political class in a purposed, transparent and accountable manner to deepen and broaden inclusiveness in the country’s chosen path of participatory democracy, for which cause the Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs was setup.

Section 13 of the Civil Service Act, 1993(PNDCL 327) states that a ministry shall Initiate and formulate policies, taking into account the needs and aspirations of the people; Undertake development planning in consultation with the National Development Planning Commission (NDPC); And Co-ordinate, monitor and evaluate the efficiency and effectiveness of the performance of the sector.

Interestingly, the core functions of the ministry which Mr. Osei Kyei Mensah – Bonsu is a minister of includes, serving as the interface between the Executive and Parliament , coordinating the tabling of government business on the floor of Parliament , facilitate the development and implementation of citizen entered collaborative interface with other state and non-state actors on matters relating to the legislature , monitor and evaluate the implementation of government policies and feedback to Parliament , undertake such research as may be necessary to enhance the collaboration between Parliament and the Executive and Civil Society groups and providing strategic advice on the Legislature’s work to the Executive.

Our elders say,’ never drop the bone to catch the shadow’ instead of Mr. Osei Kyei Mensah committing to finding unreasonable faults with Bagbin, maybe focusing on Suame Constituency’s development is a better foot forward.

Columnist: Kwesi Atuahene