Supreme Court's ruling on Deputy Speaker is judicial support for E-levy — Minority

The Minority Leader Haruna Iddrisu has said the Supreme Court ruling that deputy Speakers of Parliament can vote on motions while presiding is judicial support for the controversial E-levy.

Haruna Iddrisu

He said the Supreme Court's decision is also a travesty of parliamentary justice.

According to him "The decision of the Supreme Court of Ghana amounts to judicial interference in a time-tested parliamentary practice and established conventions.

"Everywhere in the world, in civilised democracies, including the United Kingdom, the presiding officer's vote is discounted, so, it's not for nothing that Article 102 provides that ‘A person presiding shall have no original nor casting vote."


The Supreme Court has ruled that Deputy Speakers can also count themselves as part of the quorum in determining attendance.

The panel chaired by Justice Jone Dotse said the approval of the budget was valid when deputy Speaker Joe Osei Owusu voted while he was presiding over affairs in the chamber.

Private legal practitioner and law lecturer, Justice Abdulai subsequent to the November 30, 2021 clash between Speaker Bagbin and his First Deputy after the latter overturned an earlier vote of the House rejecting Government’s 2022 Budget invited the Supreme Court to pronounce as unconstitutional, Deputy Speaker, Joseph Osei Owusu's action of counting himself for the purposes of quorum.

He argued in the context of articles 102 and 104 of the 1992 Constitution that the Deputy Speaker was not permitted to count himself for the purposes of quorum, since he had neither an original nor a casting vote as Speaker presiding.

The Supreme Court struck out the standing order 109(3) which says a Deputy Speaker or any other member presiding shall not retain his original vote while presiding.


It furthered that the Deputy Speaker can be counted during the quorum for decision making according to article 104(1)

After the ruling, Iddrisu stated that the ruling by the apex court is a "judicial support for E-levy and nothing more, judicial support for a struggling economy in distress and a judicial support for the restoration of a matter that they have said is constitutional; it’s repugnant to the provisions of Articles 102 and 104."

He maintained that "this is a travesty of parliamentary justice and a stab in the growth and development of multiparty constitutional democracy built on the spirit of checks and balances."


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