September 16, 2019

Deputy Minority Leader, Dr. James Kluste Avedzi is advocating for a policy by the two dominant political parties in Ghana, National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the New Patriotic Party (NPP) to adopt a police of protecting some class of people in Parliament.

According to Dr. Avedzi, with the experience of the life span of every Parliament, new Parliaments experience high attrition rate.

“We need to protect some class of Members of Parliament if we want to see Parliament of Ghana producing enriched laws that would resolves problems we are confronted with from time to time in our democratic agenda, for a long term to address attrition rate that is the way to go”.

He further pointed out in an interview with journalists that when a new lawmaker comes to Parliament when he or she has learnt a lot, the next election the person is off. And whether that is not part of the democracy, he responded in the affirmative but said in the advanced democracies they give protection to some class of lawmakers.

“If we are learning from those advanced democracies, we should also learn that otherwise a time would come, we would have laws not well enriched in the experience of the people who have the capacity”.

When it gets to consideration stages of Bills on the floor, only few people are seen on the floor of the House, and when we have such people who can take part very well in consideration stage of Bills losing their primaries then there is bound to be problem.

“In the case of the Wa West MP, Joseph Yieleh Chireh, he is gone and would not be in the eighth Parliament because he lost his primaries, he is our reference point when it comes to consideration stages of Bills, how to craft proper rendition of a Bill and to bring out the intent of the law he is no more”.

Political parties should have deliberate policies to ensure that such people with vast experience are protected.

When questioned if Parliament and its lawmakers should also be explaining to Ghanaians workings of the House and the real job of a lawmaker, he pointed out that, it is the job of the Public Affairs outfit of the House to perform that function, “people in the constituencies think if you have an individual who is popular in there and has resources to share the person can enter Parliament”.

Dr. James Kluste Averdzi lamented that when they enter Parliament they are unable to do the work when they come in and does not think such development should be encouraged in the name of democracy.

He made this revelations at the open of the fourth African conferences of Parliamentary Budget Officers, held in Accra Ghana.

Kwaku Sakyi-Danso/