January 25, 2017

Odekro, a transparency organization with focus on proceedings in Ghana’s Parliament, has rendered an unqualified apology to the Deputy Majority Leader, Sarah Adwoa Safo errornously capturing her performance in the just ended Sixth Parliament.

The organization in its findings released on Tuesday, named the lawyer cum legislator among the 50 worst performing MPs of the Sixth Parliament.

However Odekro has issued a statement indicating that they were wrong in their earlier presentation.

“We want to acknowledge that we erred in the graphic representation of Madam Adwoa Safo’s performance in the Sixth Parliament as captured in our factsheet and thus, we render an unqualified apology to her. For the avoidance of doubt, Madam Adwoa Safo ranked 58th in the Sixth Parliament with a contribution score of 52.02/60 and attendance score of 24.13/40; totaling 76.15%.
Her scorecard was publicly available on our facebook page as at December 6, 2016.”

In Odekro’s report, the MP for Old Tafo, Anthony Akoto Osei was adjudged the overall best MP with a total score of 94.12%. James Klutse Avedzi 93.39%; Joseph Yieleh Chirech 92.21%; Papa Owusu-Ankomah 92.17%; and Alexander Afenyo-Markin 91.03% followed in that order.

The worst performer in the Sixth Parliament is Evans Paul Aidoo who scored 11.50%; Queenstar Pokua Sawyerr 16.98%; Dr. Nii Oakley Quaye-Kumah 17.09%; Ken Ohene Agyapong 18.29%; Dr. Mustapha Ahmed 18.60%

They are made up of 16 MPs of the National Democratic Congress (who were then the Majority) and three (3) MPs of the New Patriotic Party.

“We verified the completeness of our dataset by comparing our cache of data to a list of Parliament’s sitting days obtained from staff of the Parliamentary service. On each sitting day, three documents are produced namely, the Hansard, Order Paper and Votes and Proceedings. Consequently, for each date on Parliament’s calendar we have access to three primary documents.

“We verified the accuracy of this data set by confirming that each document bore the official seal of Parliament, followed the pattern of Parliament’s formatting and was marked as having been produced by the Table Office or the Hansard Office respectively. Odekro’s Content Manager and Research Assistant both verified each documentary source of our data,” Odekro said in a statement.

“We therefore assigned a weight of 40% of total score to attendance and 60% to the contribution score.

“Our rationale is simple. An MP’s presence in Parliament is practically of no effect if he or she does not contribute to deliberations in the house. MPs who are both present and contribute should therefore normally be ranked better than MPs who make regular appearances in Parliament but do not contribute to the work of the house.”

It said only 52 MPs or 18.9% of the 275 MPs contributed amendments to the over 81 bills which were approved by Parliament. Of the 79 Bills passed, 31 Bills or 43.3% were “tax bills”, introduced to impose or revise (mostly increase) taxes, customs duties and levies. The report further noted that 255 out of 275 (92.7%) of MPs made at least 1 contribution to debates during their 4-year tenure in office.

“73 MPs were absent without permission, a clear violation of article 97(1)(c) of the constitution. 28 MPs never absented themselves without permission.

“19 MPs did not make a single statement in 4 years in Parliament.

“NPP MPs made an average of 199 statements over the 4 year period; 33 statements more than NDC MPs (166 statements).”