Absenteeism Compels Parliament to Adjourn Sitting

Absenteeism Compels Parliament to Adjourn Sitting

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Photo Credit: modernghana.com

The Speaker of Ghana’s Parliament, Edward Doe Adjaho was on Wednesday forced to adjourn parliamentary sitting following the absence of most Members on the Majority side and Chairmen of Committees, after the House had sat for almost 30 minutes.

The Minister of State In-Charge of Public Sector Reform was supposed to present the African Charter on Values and Principles of Public Service and Administration before the House. He was however absent.

Similarly, the Host Country Agreement between the Government of the Republic of Ghana and the Centre for Agriculture and Bioscience International (CABI), regarding the establishment of a Sub-Regional Office of CAB International in Ghana was also to be presented by the Minister for Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, but he was also absent.
‘Mr Speaker, the Majority Leader, doubling up as the Leader in charge of Government Business has just informed us of the absence of the Minister of State In-Charge of Public Sector Reform for which reason he is pleading that the House allows the Minister responsible for Labour and Employment to lay the document on behalf of the Minister of State In-Charge of Public Sector Reform.

May we know the reason for his absence?’ the Minority Leader, Osei Kyei-Mensah- Bonsu asked the Majority Leader, Alban Bagbin.

‘Mr Speaker, the Minister of State In-Charge of Public Sector Reform was in the House yesterday and he did indicate to me that he might not be present today because of some commitment at the Office of the President, so I was expecting that maybe he would show up and he hasn’t shown up. So I don’t have any firm reason apart from what he mentioned yesterday to me. I think he is caught up in that official assignment that is why he might not be present, but he is in town’ the Majority Leader said.

The Minority Leader also added that the Minister should have ‘sought the indulgence of the House’, which the Majority Leader did afterwards on behalf of the Minister who was absent.

The Members of Parliament could not also move the tabled motions before the House since Chairmen of the various Committees were also absent.

However, the Africa Charter on Values and Principles of Public Service Administration among other Businesses before the House were referred to the appropriate Committees for consideration and report.

Following the afore-said circumstances beyond the House’s control, the Majority Leader moved a motion that sitting be adjourned to tomorrow for Business to continue.

‘Mr Speaker, the Majority Leader is the Leader of Government Business, so if he is saying that we have to adjourn the House and those of them who are not in charge of Government Business disagree with him, I don’t understand. Mr Speaker, if the Majority Leader is saying that there is nothing before us and that we can’t continue and that we should adjourn, we should support it, for which reason, I support the motion for adjournment. Accordingly, I am to repeat, I second the motion for adjournment’ the Minority Leader stated.

The Speaker said that the House was faced with challenges of the Majority’s primaries, adding he hoped that would not affect subsequent Business of the House.

He accordingly adjourned sitting to Thursday, the 29th of October, 2015.

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