Debates of 11 Feb 2009

PRAYERS 12:10 p.m.

Madam Speaker 12:10 p.m.
Hon Members, I think I have to apologize for Sitting late today. The delay is due to the fact that the Report we are going to lay later on is not ready, but we will come to that and I think this time I will call on the Hon Member

  • [There were corrections to the Votes and Proceedings of 10th February, 2009 and the Official Report of 10th February, 2009.]
  • Mr. E. T. Mensah (on behalf of the Chairman of the Appointments Commit-tee) 12:10 p.m.
    Madam Speaker, this morning, the Leadership of the House, in consultation with the Leadership of the Appointments Committee, went to Madam
    Speaker and requested that she moved the Sitting from 10 o'clock to 12.00 noon because we were working, trying to tidy up the report for it to be laid today.
    Tried as we did, there were too many problems with the report, so we are unable to lay the report this morning. I am saying this here because people might think that it is the Speaker who has delayed commencement of Sitting, but this falls squarely in the court of the Leadership.
    So Madam Speaker, we are trying to work around the clock and lay the First Report of the Appointments Committee tomorrow.
    Thank you very much Madam Speaker.
    Mr. Isaac K. Asiamah 12:20 p.m.
    Madam Speaker, I believe as Parliament of Ghana, we should be more serious when it comes to business that we conduct in this House. Yesterday for example, an apology was rendered why we could not lay the report and at least, this morning, as you know, we were supposed to convene at 10 o'clock but the House was convened at 12.00 noon in anticipation that the report would be ready.
    Madam Speaker, we should not forget that we travel from distant places to come to this place. So if anything at all, there should be communication to hon. Members that we are shifting the Sitting to 11 o'clock or whatever it is. Of late, we just come and instead of 10 o'clock, the time for Sitting is shifted to 11 o'clock, or 12 o'clock, whatever.
    Madam Speaker, I think we should
    be more serious because Ghanaians are watching what we are doing in Parliament. Parliament should be serious in the way we conduct our businesses because we are here to offer quality service to the people of this country. Henceforth the Business Committee should be more serious and we must give a shining example to other Ghanaian workers that Parliament, indeed, is serious and that we mean business.
    Madam Speaker 12:20 p.m.
    Hon Member, I take it that you did not accept the apology but still I apologized and told you why; but it appears you did not --
    Mr. Asiamah 12:20 p.m.

    Some hon. Members: Sit down, sit down.
    Madam Speaker 12:20 p.m.
    Hon Asiamah, you have made your point. Let us hear Hon E. T. Mensah.
    Mr. Mensah 12:20 p.m.
    Madam Speaker, I would not have responded if a new Member of this House had made this intervention.
    Parliament is supposed to Sit from 10 o'clock to 2 o'clock. When we have no business, we adjourn before then, and this is not the first time that we are pushing the commencement of the Sitting from 10 o'clock to 12 o'clock.
    We have had some difficulties. This Committee, two days ago, left this House at 9.00 p.m. Yesterday, we left here around 7.30 p.m. The Leadership of the Committee cannot be writing the Report whilst Sitting. We requested that we should be given a draft copy last night so that we looked at it but we cannot just look at it as Leadership without the other members of the Committee going through.
    The practice has been that after the draft report is ready you have to pass it round to members of the Committee for
    Madam Speaker 12:20 p.m.
    Hon Asiamah, you have made your point and it has been answered. I think there is no need to go into it again. So I rule that we hurry up with the work.
    Hon Members, since the Report which we were going to consider today is not ready and cannot be laid, the items 5, 6 and 7 will be affected and we have to defer the matter to tomorrow. Can we have the Report tomorrow?
    Mr. Mensah 12:20 p.m.
    Madam Speaker, we will do our best to make sure that the report is laid tomorrow. We have already called
    the Clerk and his senior officers and all the senior officers are going to be put on it so that today, before we leave here, the Report for the first batch will be ready for laying tomorrow. On that note, I beg to move that this House do now adjourn till Thursday at 10.00 o'clock in the forenoon.
    Madam Speaker 12:20 p.m.
    Will it be ready by 10.00 o'clock?
    Mr. Mensah 12:20 p.m.
    Yes, Madam Speaker. It will be ready. So it will be laid by the Commencement of Business -- [Laughter.] It is not going to be ready but it will be laid. It will be ready for tomorrow's Sitting. That is why I am following that with -- [Interruption.]
    (Minority Chief Whip) Mr. Frederick Opare-Ansah: Madam Speaker, I beg to second the motion and whilst at it, I want to urge my Hon Colleagues to expedite action on the Report that we are expecting to see in the House and failing that we will take the advice of my Hon Colleague; then inform us duly if there is going to be a delay so that we can plan our schedules ahead.
    As you know, apart from Sitting in the Chamber, every Hon Member of Parliament has other responsibilities and we sometimes need to apportion our times accordingly. So with all due respect, if it is not going to be possible, if we can know ahead, we can re-schedule our activities for the day.
    On that note, I beg to second the motion. Thank you.
    Madam Speaker 12:20 p.m.
    Hon Members, I think the point has been made. We should Sit on time, unless when there is a legitimate reason. It has been noted that we are hard working. Hon. Asiamah has shown that he is really prepared to work as hard as we are. [Uproar] -- And we are also. The Committee, we have all seen, has been working very hard. If you watch
    the television you will see how they have been working and trying hard to present us with the Report. So I think we should all accept the problems that they have faced and then defer this to tomorrow. Thank you. It means we have only got an adjournment.
    Question put and motion agreed to.


    The House was accordingly adjour-ned at 12.30 p.m. till 12th February, 2009 at