Accra, Jan. 19 GNA – Both the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) have pulled equal slots on the Appointment and Business Committees of Parliament.
Each has 13 members on the Appointment Committee and 10 members on the Business Committee.
The Business Committee is chaired by Mr Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonss, Leader of the NPP Majority, with Mr Alexander Afenyo-Markin as the Vice.
First Deputy Speaker and MP for Bekwai Joseph Osei-Owusu, chairs the Appointmwent Committee, and the Vice Chair is Mr Afenyo-Markin.
The numbers of each Side and the names on the committees were contained in the report of the Committee of Selection on the Composition of the Membership of the Business and Appointments Committees of the House, which was approved by the House on Tuesday evening.
The approval of the report was in accordance with Article 103 of the 1992 Constitution and Order 151 of the Standing Orders of the House.
Per the report, NPP and NDC Caucuses have 10 and 13 members each on the Business and Appointments Committees of Parliament.
Mr Haruna Iddrisu, the Minority Leader, presenting the report of the Committee stated that pursuant to Order 151 (2) of the Standing Orders of the House, the Committee met and composed the Business and Appointments Committees in accordance with Orders 160 and 172.
He said during the deliberations the Committee was guided by the formula adopted by the House on Friday, 15th January, 2021 for the composition of the membership of committees.
He explained Article 103(5) of the 1992 Constitution and Order 154 of the Standing Orders of the House required that the composition of the Committees shall as much as possible reflect the different shades of opinion in Parliament.
Mr Alexander Afenyo-Markin, Deputy Majority Leader, in seconding the motion, raised some preliminary matter anchored on Standing Orders 172, 154 and 109(3).
He argued in regard to the membership of the appointment committee vis-à-vis the conclusion of the report and the fact that the First Deputy Speaker of Parliament, who chaired the committee, by the language of the Standing Orders, did not have a voting right as member of the committee.
He said if the language of the Standing Orders should suffice then the appointment committee which had membership of 26 would be left with 25 members that had voting rights.
He further argued that having regard to the membership of 25 then the appointment committee can be composed of 13 members for the NPP and 12 for the NDC.
Mrs Ursula Owusu- Ekuful, Dr Mathew Opoku Prempeh, Madam Patricia Appiagyei, Mr Frank Annoh-Dompreh, Mr Osei Bonsu Amoah and Mr Patrick Yaw Boamah are some NPP MPs on the Appointments Committee.
Mr Haruan Iddrisu, Minority Leader, Alhaji, Mohammed Muntaka Mubarak, Minority Chief Whip, Mr Mahama Ayariga, Sampson Ahi, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, Alhassan Suhuyini, James Agalga and Francis Xavier Sosu are on the NDC bench of the Appointments Committee.
The appointments committee recommends to Parliament for approval of persons nominated by the President for appointment as Minister of State, Deputy Minister, Members of Council of State, the Chief Justice and other Justices of the Supreme Court and any other persons specified under the constitution or under any other enactment.
The Business Committee determines the business of each Sitting and the order in which it is to be taken.
The current Parliament of Ghana has no clear majority as each party has 137 seats.
The NPP Side together with an MP on an independent seat constitutes the Majority Side of the House.