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Speaker defers decision on Adwoa Safo’s absence from Parliament to October

Adwoa Safo, MP for Dome Kwabenya and Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection

Adwoa Safo

The Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin has deferred to October 2022, the decision on whether or not Sarah Adwoa Safo‘s Dome-Kwabenya constituency seat should be declared vacant because of her continued absence from Parliament without permission.

The Speaker at Thursday’s sitting when the matter came up for discussion said he needed a written ruling on the matter based on an objection on whether the Majority Leader can move the motion for the House to adopt the report of the Privileges Committee of Parliament on the three absentee MPs.

The matter came up on the floor for discussion Thursday afternoon moments before the House went on a break sine die.

The Speaker in adjourning the matter said:

“The issue raised by the Minority Leader, I need time to submit to this House a reasoned written ruling. I cannot in a haste of today, give you a ruling. In the circumstances I will urge this House to postpone… On return I will deliver a written ruling. I will proceed to adjourn proceedings.”

The Committee of Privileges has by a majority decision recommended that the Dome-Kwabenya seat, currently being occupied by Sarah Adwoa Safo should be declared vacant for absenting herself from Parliament for more than 42 days without permission from the Speaker, and also refusing to take advantage of an opportunity offered her to provide an explanation.

The Minority, however, according to the report, acknowledges that numerous opportunities has been given her, but wants the entire House to rather take the decision on the way forward.

Ahead of the adjourning of Parliament sine die today, the Majority Leader, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu drew the House’s attention’s to the Privileges Committee’s report on Adwoa Safo and wanted the House to adopt the report.

But the Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu objected.

After the back and forth, the Speaker decided to go for a short break to be able to consult the old lady, as he put it, before ruling on the vex issue.

On his return, the Speaker explained that, because of the nature of the issue, he needed to provide a written ruling, which cannot be immediately done and therefore needed more time. He therefore invited concluding statements and adjourned the House sine die.

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