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Quality of Parliament Questioned

The Majority Leader and Minister in charge of Parliamentary Affairs, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, has bemoaned the lack of quality in the caliber of people who represent constituents in Ghana’s Parliament.

The Majority Leader, who was speaking on TV3‘s New Day on Monday, attributed the lack of quality to the level of corruption that takes place throughout the election process.

“I honestly think that as a people, we should be looking at the quality of people that come to Parliament,” he advised.

“Increasingly, if we must admit I think money is too much taking center stage in our politics.”

According to the Suame Constituency MP, political parties fail to ensure due diligence ensues during the election of candidates to represent them.

The Majority Leader accused polling station executives and leaders of the various political parties of allowing themselves to be bribed in order for some members to make it to the House.

“If you want to face the electoral college, you would realize that many of them position themselves just to receive drinks and kola from contestants, be they aspiring members of Parliament or even within the same party as leaders of the party.”

He questioned the means through which political parties conduct their primaries, adding that is not the ideal way to advance the cause of politics in the country.

He noted that the constitution provides for political parties to sell their ideas and programmes to the electorates, and that is the best way for the electorates to decide who they want to lead them instead of allowing people cut corners to get to the top.

“It is those people that we call polling executives that are supposed to do the canvassing and they do not do that and, majority of them just sit down to look at quality of a drink presented to them before they allow you to represent them.”

Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu further stated that Parliament suffers some weakness as a result of the lack of quality, noting that being in Parliament requires some level skill and experience in order to ensure the judicious execution of government business.

“It is about experience and intelligence, and it affects the quality of business in the House, and it should be the concern of all of us.”

He lamented that legislators on the majority side who have the necessary skills to attend to business on the floor have been made Ministers and Deputy Ministers who do not have time.

This, he said, is taking a toll on the kind of deliberation that takes place in parliament.

The Majority Leader, who has been in Parliament for over two decades, said experience is very crucial to being able to be on top of issues discussed on the floor.

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