February 10, 2011

A member of the opposition New Patriotic Party and Member of Parliament for Manhyia, Mathew Opoku Prempeh, has threatened to drag the Electoral Commission to Court if it makes an attempt to expand the size of Ghana’s Parliament from the current 230 Constituencies to 255.

Hon. Matthew Opoku Prempeh has told Citi News there are moves by the Electoral Commission to create twenty-five additional constituencies across the country.

He said he is aware the EC intends to use the provisional results of the 2010 National Population and Housing Census, which has put Ghana’s population at more than twenty-four million, as the basis to create more seats in the nation’s legislature.

In an interview with Citi News, the MP warned he may be forced to sue the Commission if it goes ahead to increase the seats by that margin.

“From the way the EC exercises its mandate to be able to create constituencies, in the last ten years, the EC would have added over a quarter, that’s over 25% more seats to Parliament than in 2000. We were a 200 member Parliament in 2000. In 2004, they created 30 seats; in 2012 they want to create another 25. So 55 seats in a spate of less than ten years. I think it’s too much. When they created 30 seats, the whole of Parliament had to be reconfigured at the cost of millions of Ghana cedis” he said.

According to Hon. Opoku Prempeh, apart from the financial burden put on the nation by the creation of more seats, the mode of creating the constituencies is not the best.

“It should not be arbitrary that the EC says Manhyia is too large so I have divided Manhyia but I won’t do Oforikrom and will do only Bimbila. It is too arbitrary the way they are creating the seats” he bemoaned.

There is currently a public outcry following a proposal by Members of Parliament to be paid Gh¢7,000 from an initial Gh¢2,500 salary.