Stop disrespecting Parliament - Bagbin tells Health Minister to appear in two hours

The Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin has given the Minister of Health, Kwaku Agyeman-Manu a two-hour ultimatum to appear before the House to answer some questions or face the necessary consequences.

Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin

Pulse Ghana

The Minister failed to show up on Monday, March 29, 2021, to answer a question filed by the Member of Parliament for Sefwi Akontombra, Alex Tetteh Djornobuah on the health facility programmed to be constructed in his constituency.

He was also expected to give details on when the facility will be completed and handed over but the Health Minister failed to show up.

Although Majority Chief Whip, Frank Annoh-Dompreh pleaded with the Speaker to defer the question, as, according to him, the minister had indicated his absence to the Majority Caucus and also informed the House that the Minister is engaged in an important assignment elsewhere.

But the Minority Chief Whip, Mohammed Muntaka Mubarak did not take excuses of Annoh-Dompreh.

He described the conduct of the Minister as unacceptable.

He said "We cannot start with these same excuses of Ministers refusing to attend to the House because they have other things that are more important than appearing before this House. This is the time for the budget when all of them need to be in Accra."

"If we relax and allow this thing to continue, then all of us will be held responsible for making this House to be seen to be weak. Why will the Minister of Health say there is some other engagement that is more important than appearing before Parliament. If it was his vetting, will other things be more important to him than that?" he queried.

The Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin in his ruling described the conduct of the Minister as disrespectful.

He directed him to show up in the House within 2 hours to answer the question or face some sanctions.

"The minister responsible for health is aware that a question has been scheduled for today. The reason he has given for his inability to present himself to the house to answer the question is completely disrespectful to parliament and I'm not going to take that.

"I direct the minister to appear before parliament in the next two hours to answer the question. Failing to do so... ministers must take parliamentary business seriously…within two hours, the minister must appear to answer this question," Bagbin stated.

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