Leading member of the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP), Gabby Asare Otchere-Darko, has asked that attention should be moved to how the 2022 budget statement and economic policy of government will address the myriads of issues confronting the country.
The lawyer, taking to social media after the majority side approved the budget, said the fuss around the rejection or otherwise of the budget should be shelved.
“There’s really nothing to be particularly excited about either Friday’s unlawful rejection or Tuesday’s passing of the budget.
What’s relevant is how this budget may seek to tackle the economic issues like unemployment which confront the nation.
How will it ease hardships?” he said in a tweet on Wednesday December 1, 2021.
There’s really nothing to be particularly excited about either Friday’s unlawful rejection or Tuesday’s passing of the budget. What’s relevant is how this budget may seek to tackle the economic issues like unemployment which confront the nation.
How will it ease hardships?
— Gabby Otchere-Darko (@GabbyDarko) December 1, 2021
A one-sided majority side voted to approve the 2022 budget after the minority side refused to show up in the Chambers.
In a dramatic fashion, the first deputy speaker, Joe Osei Owusu counted himself as the 138th MP to make up the majority to take a decision per constitutional requirement in Article 104.
“Honourable members, the numbers presented to me by the clerks at table is 137 of you plus me, MP for Bekwai, 138. Honourable members, for the avoidance of doubt. Let me read out the Constitutional requirement, so that there is no confusion as to who can vote…what numbers are required to vote to take a decision. Article 104 (1) except as otherwise provided in the constitution matters of parliament shall be determined by the majority of members present and voting.
“The majority of members present and voting with at least half of all members of parliament present. What this means is that before you take a decision, there must be at least majority of all members present. With me we are 138 members. That’s a majority,” he explained.
Article 104 (1) states “Except as otherwise provided in this Constitution, matters in Parliament shall be determined by the votes of the majority of members present and voting, with at least half of all the members of Parliament present”.
But the conduct of the acting speaker has been criticized by the minority who have described it as an illegality.