The Executive Director of the Africa Center for Parliamentary Affairs (ACEPA), Dr. Rasheed Draman has applauded the Speaker of Parliament’s proposal for stricter measures to address the issue of late attendance to the House among MPs.
Alban Bagbin on Friday, December 8, stated that starting next year, entry points to the Chamber will be locked at 10:00 AM on each sitting day.
Speaking on Eyewitness News on Citi FM, Dr. Draman told Nana Tuffour Boateng that the implementation of the proposal will help curb lateness and absenteeism.
“We are not only dealing with MPs showing up late; we are dealing with the Chamber being empty over and over again and the Speaker after making attempts to deal with this issue has failed and so it is very welcoming to hear the Speaker say that at the beginning of the next meeting, the Chamber will be locked.
“This is very long overdue, and some of us have proposed in the past and some MPs have picked an issue with our proposal that we should try and do what other countries do, take a realistic approach and try and put in measures that could be very biting when it comes to absenteeism and we were proposing that as it happens in other places, if you don’t show up, some of your salary is taken away in place to stop the lateness.”
Dr. Draman added that the closure of the entry points to the Chamber would be a more viable solution to the absenteeism than hauling people before the Privileges Committee, which has done little to curb the situation.
“We have had people brought before the Privileges Committee for absenting themselves for more than some days mandated by the law and that has happened a couple of times and that has not changed the behaviour which has been very consistent even during most important occasions like the period when they have to pass the budget.”
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