February 21, 2024

The King and Overlord of Dagbon, Ya Naa Abukari II, has called on Parliament to institute clear guidelines in the selection of leadership of both Majority and the Minority Caucuses as it pertains in the election of the Speaker of Parliament and the two deputies.

The statement of the Dagbon Overlord comes months after a decision by National Executives of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) to replace the Haruna Iddrisu led leadership of the NDC group in Parliament.

It will be recalled that the NDC sacked then Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu, and replaced him with Dr Cassiel Ato Forson, who was the Ranking Member on the Finance Committee who is also the Member of Parliament (MP) for Ajumako-Enyan-Esiam in the Central Region.

Similarly, the party also removed the Deputy Minority Leader, James Klutse Avedzi and replaced him with Emmanuel Armah Kofi Buah.

Kwame Agbodza also took over as the Minority Whip from Mohammed Muntaka with Ahmed Ibrahim as First Minority Whip and Comfort Doyoe Ghansah maintaining her position of Second Minority Whip.

The announcement of this decision brought serious tension and confusion within the rank and file of the party. Some senior members of the party and Members of Parliament strongly criticized the national party for taking such an unpopular decision and others also sided with the decision.

However, National Chairman of the NDC, Johnson Aseidu Nketiah, insisted the decision was in line with the internal restructuring of the party ahead of the 2024 general elections.

But, the Ya Naa in his welcome remarks when the Speaker of Parliament, Alban S.K Bagbin, paid a courtesy call on him at the Gbewaa Palace on Tuesday, June 13, posited the selection of leadership for both majority and minority must be clarified in the Standing Orders of Parliament as it is expressly stated with the election of a speaker and his deputies.

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He also observed the capricious removal of the former Minority leadership by the Aseidu Nketiah led NDC national executives was worrying and called for clear guidelines moving into the future.

The Dagbon Overlord maintained when this is done, it will strengthened unity in the legislature and enhance good governance in the country.

The Ya Naa further underscored the important role of Parliament in the governance process of the country, adding Parliament has the responsibility of holding the executive arm of government to check.

Meanwhile, the visit of the Speaker to Yendi formed part of his weeklong working tour of the North to interact with traditional leaders and the citizenry pertaining to the 30th anniversary of multiparty democracy since 1993.

Former Minority Leader (MP) – Haruna Iddrisu with MP for Yendi – Farouk Aliu Mahama

Mr. Alban Bagbin noted the development of the country is a collective responsibility which must not be left on the shoulders of only politicians.

The Speaker argued that the real leadership of our society are the traditional and religious leaders and, in his view, they must therefore active roles in the governance of the country.

“So how can we run a national governance where we say that the true leaders of the society should not participate in the governance. This is a clear indication from me that I don’t agree with the 1992 constitution on the prohibition of Chiefs from politics [they use term active politics] and whatever that means, the Supreme Court has struggled to explain to us” he stated.

 

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