The leader of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Members of Parliament (MP), Mr Haruna Iddrisu says his side has no difficulty sitting on the left side of the Speaker in the Chamber.
“Let me assure the Ghanaian people that the NDC 137 MPs have no difficulty sitting to the left of the Speaker so long as our numerical strength is respected and respected in the composition of committees and in the determination of leadership of committees, whilst we continue to pursue legitimate legal and constitutional processes to procure what we deserve as a majority party, someone will say, what is on the left or what is on the right, we have no difficulty at all,” Mr Iddrisu said at a press briefing in Parliament on Thursday afternoon [Jan 14, 2021].
“But we think that given what we’ve shared with you, guided by apt constitutional provisions, and evidenced by the fact that the Fomena MP is not joining the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and cannot join the New Patriotic Party by the constitutional framework…” Mr Iddrisu added.
The independent MP for Fomena, Andrew Asiamah Amoako has officially written to the Speaker informing him that he will do business with the New Patriotic Party (NPP) caucus in Parliament.
In a letter dated January 13, 2021 and addressed to the Speaker of Parliament, Mr Amoako declared that he “shall for the purposes of transacting business in the house associate with the NPP caucus in the Eighth Parliament.”
”For the avoidance of doubt, I do hereby affirm that I shall cooperate and collaborate with the NPP caucus in the Eighth Parliament,” Mr Amoako who is also the Second Deputy Speaker of Parliament stated in the letter, a copy of which has been seen by Graphic Online.
Before officially putting it in writing, Mr Amoako had already verbally indicated in separate media interviews before the inauguration of the 8th Parliament that he will do business with the NPP caucus.
He is the only independent MP in the 275 member house.
The NPP caucus has 137 seats and the NDC side also has 137 seats.
Mr Amoako’s official declaration therefore gives the NPP side the numerical strength for purposes of doing business in the house as the Majority in line with Standing Order 7 of Parliament.
Standing Order 7 talks about who forms the majority group in Parliament and explains it as the party or parties with the largest group in Parliament.
The rule in the House is that the Majority side sits on the right side of the Speaker.
Haruna Iddrisu’s reaction
But reacting at the Thursday afternoon press briefing, Mr Haruna Iddrisu said the NDC has initiated a number parliamentary election petitions in some constituencies and “we are optimistic that subject to those judicial processes and judicial decisions, we probably will constitute the majority.”
“What then happens to Standing Orders which didn’t contemplate that with us leading the majority in Parliament whilst the executive authority is exercised by another political party. So without prejudice to the court processes, we have commenced work to regain the seats that are being stolen from us, I’ll emphasis just two, Techiman South and Sefwi, that is not to say that we are abandoning the others,” Mr Iddrisu said.