No hope; Avedzi decries 'partisan' Parliament

No hope; Avedzi decries 'partisan' Parliament
Source: Ghana| Myjoyonline.com |Abubakar Ibrahim |abubakar.ibrahim@myjoyonline.com
Date: 26-06-2019 Time: 10:06:04:pm

Deputy Minority Leader has said, Parliament is handicapped because legislators rather take a partisan stance and not vote on issues.

James Klutse Avedzi has said, the two dominant parties; opposition National Democratic Party (NDC) and governing, New Patriotic Party (NPP) take turns voting along party lines depending on what their interest is.

“The day we [Members of Parliament] begin to vote on issues and not on party lines, that is the day issues will begin to change and then the powers of Parliament will then be established,” he said Tuesday.

The Ketu South MP explained that “Decision in Parliament is taken by the number of votes so if the issue on the floor is to be voted for, who do you think would win? The majority party wins, because we vote on party lines, we don’t vote on issues.”

He was speaking at a National Dialogue on public accountability organised by the National Commission on Civic Education (NCCE) in Accra. 

In 2009, there were suggestions by some political scientists for the then governing NPP to expel MP for Asikuma-Odoben-Brakwa, P. C. Appiah-Ofori, from the party.

He was known to have openly criticised his party and disagreed with issues brought forward by the party in the House.  


James Klutse Avedzi is the Deputy Minority Leader

The anti-corruption crusader was as well urged to quit the party so that people would know that his position is so strong against the spirits that operate within NPP as a political party.

“Those who choose to be members of an organisation would definitely like to work for it to succeed. Generally, these activities involve conflicts, and everybody would necessarily not agree to issues when they come up, but you don't go out publicly to take a stance against your party, to me that is the position of Appiah-Ofori in the NPP,” a political science lecturer at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kwasi Amakyi told the Ghanaian Chronicle then. 

Mr Avedzi believes MPs must be able to vote against their party depending on the issue on the Floor so as to enhance debate and the final decision taken in the interest of the country. 

When asked by the moderator of the discussion, Samson Lardy Anyenini, how the trend is going to be reversed, he suggested there is no hope since MPs want to retain their seats. 

“If I come from a constituency, say I belong to NDC and then my party is in power if an issue comes to the floor and my party’s position is that we have to vote for that issue. If I single out myself because I’m against that decision, and I vote against it, I will lose the next election.”