“A District Assembly shall consist of the following members -
(d) other members not being more than thirty per cent of all members of the District Assembly, appointed by the President in consultation with the traditional authorities and other interest groups in the district.”
Mr Speaker, you will recollect that at the level of the Appointments Committee, when we wanted to know from the then nominees of the President at the level of the Minister and Deputy Ministers, theywere not able to tell us the number that is required to be added to the elected membership and we allowed the matter to rest. Mr Speaker, so we have some inconsistencies in the numbers in the various Assemblies relating to the President's nominees. The Hon Minister may have to come clean on this and let them know the exact numbers at those levels, which are required to be included as government appointees.
Mr Speaker, again, if you look at article
250(1), it provides:
“The emoluments of a District Chief Executive of a District Assembly shall be determined by Parliament and shall be charged on the Consolidated Fund.”
Mr Speaker, I do not recollect that
Parliament has done this exercise from NDC I, through NPP to NDC II. The emoluments of the DCEs should be established by Parliament, we do not do that. Mr Speaker, and just so that somebody may say that, “Oh! but perhaps, we could establish that and maybe 1993 and thereafter, have been continuing”.
Mr Speaker, it cannot be because when article 71 provides for the determination of the salaries and emoluments for the President and the Members of Parliament, it is done ritually every four years. And so, the Hon Minister, who is now responsible, should try to right what might have gone wrong or what has gone wrong, indeed.
Mr Speaker, the other thing that we should also take note of, again, relating to the emoluments of the Assembly members as captured under article 250(2), the Assembly members wanting to have some emoluments; we have left that to the Assemblies and every now and then, they are complaining because we have said the Constitution provides that it shall be paid out of the Assemblies' own resources.
The serious imbalance is that some Assembly Members are very well remunerated, others do not have anything at all, which is why some of them determine for themselves that there should be constant meetings of the Assembly in order for them to have sitting allowances. And really, it is taking so much from the resources of the Assemblies. And Mr Speaker, we expect the Hon Minister to come clean and provide us with the determination, the way forward so the Assemblies will be sufficiently motivated to work and work efficiently.
Mr Speaker, but going back to the issue raised initially relating to the constriction imposed on individuals to have their own platforms, my clearest understanding of the Constitution is that what we are doing, really, is to go against the grain of the
twenty people approach me and I talk to them, I am already on a political platform. One does not need to now go and apply -- and if one did not apply, therefore, one would have committed an offence and would then be slapped with a penalty. Mr Speaker, we should move away from that because at the lower level of the Local Government Administration, various people, local people who necessarily do not know our Constitution, who necessarily are not tettered or literate would want to present themselves and we have to encourage them to do so with little hindrances -