The office of the Speaker of Parliament has reacted to media reports making light of the Speaker Alban Bagbin’s health condition.
A statement from his office dated Monday, 29 November, reiterated that the trip to the United Arab Emirates for a routine medical check-up was necessary, adding that the trip was not putting pressure on the public purse.
“The current Speaker of Ghana’s Parliament, Alban Sumana Kingsford Bagbin, being mindful of the times in which the country finds itself, traveled with a comparatively skeletal staff, taking into consideration the economic situation in the country and bearing in mind, the need for frugal and prudent spending.
“The office will advise that the health issues of the Speaker and that of other office bearers are not politicised as anybody could be taken ill at any time,” it urged.
An earlier statement said the Speaker was accompanied by his wife, the Head of parliamentary clinic, the Speaker’s Secretary, and his aide.
It noted that there are records to show that all his predecessors, particularly in the 4th Republic, embarked on similar trips and even the entire leadership of the House are entitled to same.
“His office is, therefore, not happy about reports on the trip, particularly on reason why he is accessing healthcare abroad rather than home. Indeed, the Speaker has on a number of occasions stated openly and continues to maintain his position to Members of Parliament to help safeguard the public purse and so has been mindful of same in all his dealings as Speaker.
“The Office of Speaker wishes to assure the general citizenry of its commitment to protect the public purse at all times,” it added.
The statement comes on the back of reports suggesting that the Speaker traveled with a large delegation.