Considering the sheer number of heavyweights in Parliament that were shown the exit during last Saturday’s NPP parliamentary primaries, Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu is raising concerns about the political parties structure for Parliamentary democracy and the use of money in electing candidates.
According to him, the time has come for a national conversation on the country’s body politics to identify whether the votes of electorates are an indication of the popularity of the candidate, whether the government is unpopular or it is the money that is popular.
Mr. Iddrisu who was contributing on the floor of the House to remarks by the Speaker of Parliament, Professor Aaron Michael Oquaye on the NPP primaries said there is the need to protect the sanctity and integrity of Ghana’s Parliament which is fast eroding by the day.
He emphasised that the monetisation of politics lately needs to be watched, stressing that for the Chairman of the Finance Committee, Dr. Mark Assibey Yeboah and the Chairman of the Constitutional, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs, Ben Abdallah Banda to lose isn’t heartwarming and not good in building the capacity of those who deserve it.
Adding his voice, the Majority Leader, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, pointed out that leading countries in Parliamentary democracies that Ghana is learning from are no longer practicing the system where doors are widely open for new aspirants to contest sitting MPs.
The Majority Leader who contested unopposed in the primaries for the Suame constituency also noted that Parliament must find a way of accessing its Members so that in the event of such primaries they would know which seats can be contested and which MPs are effective or not.
He agreed with the Minority Leader that all the political parties, stakeholders, and the general public must have a national conversation on the monetisation aspect creeping into politics and making only those who can afford the money win elections.
He questioned how some electorates use only unfulfilled promises made by Members of Parliament to judge their performance in the House and vote against them.
Some of the MPs including Dr. Assibey Yeboah, (New Juabeng South), William Agyapong Quaittoo (Akim Oda), Ato Panford (Shama), Kingsley Aboagye Gyedu (Bibiani) and Nana Akua Afriyie (Ablekuma North) who lost their seats in the primaries were in Parliament today as usual to represent their constituents and conduct business on the floor of the House.