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Adwoa Safo, 2 other ‘absentee’ MPs got permission to stay out – NPP

The governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) has jumped to the defense of three of its Members of Parliament (MPs) referred to the Privileges Committee for absenting themselves for more than 15 consecutive sittings without permission.

The MPs are Dome Kwabenya MP, Sarah Adwoa Safo; Assin Central MP, Kennedy Agyapong and Ayawaso Central MP, Henry Quartey.




In an interview with Accra-based Joy News, General Secretary of the NPP, John Boadu disclosed that all three MPs per constitutional requirement had permission to absent themselves.

He maintained that the party’s leadership in Parliament was aware of the development.

He stated that he expects the Privileges Committee to clear them contrary to fears of by-elections in all three constituencies.

“I don’t think the party will have any other position than to canvass the position of the fact that all of them sought permission before staying outside. All three. They did.

“I know they also know because I have heard statement to the effect that…for instance in Adwoa Safo’s case, the son needed a surgery or something and that ensured that she had to stay further than she agreed to stay.

“But whatever, we are running a democracy and there’s a need to set examples for our people. If you decide to be a Parliamentarian, you must know the rules and you must also abide by the rules and if there are instances where there’s the need for you to seek permission before you leave, it should be done.

“So for us as a party it’s not something that is going to affect us greatly. I expect [them to be cleared by the privileges committee],” Mr. Boadu said.

When his attention was drawn to the fact that the Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin and Majority Leader had stated that Adwoa Safo, in particular, did not have permission to be absent, John Boadu responded saying, “so be it but I’m saying that whatever it is, it’s a learning curve for all of us.

“If you opt to become a Parliamentarian, you must learn the rules. You must know what it means to be there and its not as if you are restricted not to travel.

“Even if you want to stay beyond the required so-called 15-day absence, even the absence must be with our permission. What it means that you can even be out for a year if you still have the permission of the house,” he added.

Alban Bagbin, Speaker of Parliament, on Tuesday, April 5 referred the three members of the House to the Privileges Committee.

According to the Speaker, the three breached the 15-day absence rule, hence his decision to refer them to the Privileges Committee for the necessary action to be taken.

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