The Deputy Minority Chief Whip in Parliament Ahmed Ibrahim has blamed the Speaker of Parliament, S.K. Bagbin for turning a blind eye on Tuesday, March 29, 2022, by not ensuring the rules of the floor was brought to bear during the Majority’s one-sided approval of the controversial E-levy.
He has further accused the Speaker of betraying their course in the one-sided approval of the E-levy.
He was of the view that the Speaker should have instructed the Clerk of Parliament to call for a headcount when the Minority walked out on the passage of the E-levy.
Mr Ibrahim explained that in the same scenario, when the First Deputy Speaker, Joe Osei Owusu assumed the seat to overturn what the Minority did with the Speaker presiding, he (the First Deputy Speaker) instructed the Clerk of Parliament to call for a headcount and counted himself to satisfy himself they have formed a quorum to pass the 2022 budget.
The National Democratic Congress (NDC) Member of Parliament for Banda Constituency in the Ahafo Region said this in an interview with Kwame Obeng Sarkodie on the Ghana Yensom morning show on Accra 100.5 FM, Thursday, March 31, 2022.
He stressed that before the decision was made for the Minority to walk out on the passage of the E-levy; Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrissu notified the Speaker.
“The Speaker asked when the leadership of the Minority intends to walk out and he (the Speaker) was told immediately after the Minority leader finished making his submission on the E-levy,” Mr Ibrahim said. “So, nothing came to the Speaker as a surprise, when the Minority staged the walkout,” he added.
He noted that the Speaker ought to have known that the NPP could not have formed a quorum to have passed the E-levy because the Majority numbers were 137.
This, he indicated, implies that the Majority fell short of forming a quorum to have passed the E-levy per the Supreme Court’s ruling on the formation of parliamentary quorum.
He said the Speaker failed to make article 108 work when the Minority staged the walked out.
“I’ve always been number one defender of the Speaker but on this front, the Speaker betrayed the Minority big time on what transpired in Parliament last Tuesday,” he bemoaned.