A former Deputy Minister for Defence, Major RTD. Derek Oduro has said that the Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin did no wrong for getting up and handing over to his Deputies right before an election on the controversial 1.75% E-Levy.
It was reported that after the 1.75% E-Levy was okayed by the Finance Committee of Parliament, it was brought to a plenary session for it to be voted on by the MPs inside the house.
Although the Speaker is said to have been in Parliament earlier, just before the E-Levy election, he stepped out.
Due to this, the First Deputy Speaker, Joseph Osei-Owusu had to preside over the sitting and that meant a possible loss of one vote for the majority side.
This infuriated the Minority MPs with some demanding that the Speaker returns to his seat for the session to proceed.
This caused chaos in Parliament again where the MPs engaged in another physical confrontation on Monday night.
It was perceived by the Majority that the Speaker intentionally left his seat so that the voting on the E-Levy will result in 137 for and 137 against.
But Speaking on the matter on Atinka TV’s morning show, Ghana Nie with Ekourba Gyasi Simpremu, Major RTD. Derek Oduro said it was normal for the Speaker to get out of his seat because he might be attending to nature’s call or something very critical.
According to him, there was no law binding Alban Bagbin not to get up at any point and so there was nothing wrong he got up from his seat.
He said there should not be any vacuum at any point and so it was also okay for the speaker to hand over to his deputies before leaving the chamber.
“There is no stage where you can get up or not. Anytime you feel like getting up, you can do so because no one knows what is pinching you, you can get up for refreshment, you can get up to attend to nature’s call, or you can be exhausted and you can call your deputies to step in. Yesterday was a special day and the Speaker sat all day and later got up which is normal,” he said.
Despite the fact that he said Alban Bagbin did no wrong for getting up, Major RTD. Derek Oduro said the Speaker should have remained in his seat to allow the First and Second Deputies to take part in the debate.