Former Member of Parliament for Kumbungu, Ras Mubarak, has petitioned the Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin, over absenteeism on the part of some legislators.
According to him, the absence of four MPs for more than 15 sittings in the house without permission from the speaker constitutes a breach of the constitution.
The four MPs listed are Dome-Kwabenya MP, Sarah Adwoa Safo; Ayawaso Central MP, Henry Quartey; Ebenezer Kojo Kum, MP for Ahanta West; and Ken Ohene Agyapong, MP for Assin Central.
“In view of this reported breach of the constitutional provision, I respectfully petition your high office to direct for their conduct to be referred to the Privileges Committee for consideration and necessary action,” Mr Mubarak said in his petition.
The former Kumbungu MP said since the Standing Orders of Parliament are not clear as to who can or should raise the matter of absenteeism on the floor of parliament, he sees the need to do so as a former MP.
He believes such liberties taken by the MPs threaten Ghana’s democracy if sanctions are not applied.
Mr Mubarak further cited an instance where the people of Lower West Akyem during the 7th Parliament did not have representation in Parliament for nearly two years, over absenteeism.
Mr Ras Mubarak has urged all legislators to support the call for immediate actions against their colleagues who have absented themselves without due process.
The former MP, in his petition, also mentioned the latest Afrobarometer data, which suggested that trust in Parliament has fallen by 12% between 2002 and 2019.
The report ranked Parliament as the third corrupt institution in our country – just behind the police and judges.
He, thus, urged Parliament to take the necessary steps to erase such negative perceptions and remain united at all fronts despite their individual differences.
“I humbly submit that democracy can only work if Parliament puts the common good ahead of the party and personal interest.
“At a time of seeming collapse of trust in politics and Parliament as an institution, it is my fervent prayer that the House would rise to the occasion and be UNITED on this matter, so as to uphold our constitution and also win back waned public confidence,” he urged.