The Majority Leader and Minister for Parliamentary Affairs Osei Kyei Mensah-Bonsu has raised concerns about the high attrition rate in Parliament which he says is taking a huge toll on the quality of delivery in the House.
A Parliament, he argued, is as strong as its members and that the quality of material in the Ghanaian Parliament “should be the concern of all of us.”
He thus pleaded with the political parties to be mindful of the deteriorating quality of Parliament noting that “the high attrition rate in the country is not helping to grow our Parliament.”
“Today, the 275 members that we have, more than one half are first timers [and] it explains the reason why when we want to talk about quality materials in Parliament we are talking about Alban Bagbin, we are talking about a person called Kyei Mensah Bonsu. These two people are not instant products. They are not products of today. They belong to the years of your Excellency [President Akufo-Addo], your year group,” he said.
The Suame Legislator further attributed the inability of Ghana’s Parliament to effectively exercise its oversight responsibility to its lack of financial independence.
“Ghana’s Parliament doesn’t have the financial independence we want it to have even though we have made tremendous strides,” he said during his speech at a ceremony to celebrate 25 years of uninterrupted Parliamentary Democracy under the fourth republic on March 5.
He continued, “Its committees are not properly resourced and are unable to do proper enquiry into governmental activities which as the constitutional provide will lead to the formulation of laws. We are not able to do this effectively.”
Mr. Mensah-Bonsu also bemoaned the glaring inequality in gender representation in the House despite a requirement by the IPU that a third of the membership of Parliament in the world should be females by 2020.
“Unfortunately, the 275 members of Parliament that we have, the female representation is in the region of 31 and that cannot be a source of pride for us,” he lamented