Senior Advisor, Africa Parliamentarians Network Against Corruption, Professor David Abdulai has called for the introduction of a biometric attendance system in Parliament to curb legislators’ absenteeism.

This follows comments by the Member of Parliament for North Tongu, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa alluding to the fact that MPs absenteeism in recent times has been adversely affecting Parliamentary business.

Speaking to the matter on JoyNews’ PM Express, Professor Abdulai noted that that it was about time Parliament introduced a biometric system to ensure Parliamentarians attended Parliament frequently.

He noted that some MPs had been sneaking their names onto the attendance sheet without being in the house, hence, a biometric system would prevent absent MPs from continuing the act.

He further noted that it was unnecessary to burden electorates to punish their MPs for absenteeism when that could be done by the House itself.

He said, “Somebody was saying that the electorates should punish them for not doing government business, I think that is farfetched. It goes more than not just being in parliament that is the issue of what people punish their MPs for. 

“But my issue is that we can use technology efficiently and effectively to make sure that we can make sure these MPs are actually in Parliament. I mean there’s no way that your biometric thumbprint will be the same as another MP’s so you cannot have your name smuggled in into the attendance sheet.

“You’ll have to be there and then till the end of the sitting. So that is one way I think that is important for us to address the absenteeism.”

He added that MPs should note that they are not in Parliament to represent their personal interests but rather that of their constituents, so they should hold their duties in the House to high esteem.

“But also our MPs should understand that they’re voted into Parliament to do business of the people. At the end of the day they’re not representing themselves, it is important that we get it clearly for them to understand that it is their duty to always be there unless they’re out in their constituencies dealing with other issues that they do, but at least for not showing up just because they don’t feel like it,” he said.