The Second Vice Chairman for Suame Constituency of New Patriotic Party (NPP), Richard Akwasi Asante, says the appointment of two Deputy Speakers of Parliament from the ruling party does not put NPP in the Minority position.
He described it as false, the claim by the leadership of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) that the two Deputy speakers do not have voting rights therefore the NDC assumes the majority caucus in parliament.
Parliament, he said, on 6th January 2021, appointed Mr Alban Sumani Bagbin Former NDC MP, as the Speaker of Parliament while both Hon Joseph Osei Wusu MP for Bekwai and Hon Andrew Asiamah, MP for Fomena as First and Second Deputy Speakers respectively.
Mr Asante, described such claim as laughable and childish because it is contrary to the letter and spirit of the 1992 Constitution. He told Kessbenfm’s Osempakani Sampson.
According to him, apart from the Speaker of Parliament, all Members of Parliament (MPs) including Deputy speakers have voting rights.
He disclosed that a Speaker of Parliament can be elected from the MPs or any other persons who qualifies to be a member of parliament.
When a Member of Parliament, is elected, he said, such person loses the voting right after a by-election to replace him or her in parliament.
According to him, the 1992 Constitution, emphatically restrains only the Speaker of Parliament from voting.
‘Article 104(2) of the Constitution 1992, states Speaker of Parliament does not have either original or voting right’ Mr Asante asserted.
The Deputies, he said, are not supposed to be elected from same party in accordance with the 1992 Constitution, adding they do not lose their voting rights since they are not replaced through by-election.
“Shut up. Deputy Speakers of Parliament have voting rights and still puts NPP in Majority Position in the house’ He said.
According to him, currently both NDC and NPP have 137 parliamentary seats therefore the decision by the independent MP, to do business with NPP, makes the ruling party Majority in parliament.