the borders of Ho East to represent the whole Volta Region.
Typical of Members of Parliament from the Volta Region, he was very visible, vocal and ever present in Parliament.
Mr Speaker, no wonder that he caught the eye of the then President, His Excellency Jerry John Rawlings, who appointed him as the Hon Deputy Minister for Roads and Transport.
Mr Speaker, later in September 2000, he was elevated to the position of Acting Hon Minister for Roads and Transport. At that time, a number of our Hon Colleagues, now present in the House, were also appointed as District Chief Executives (DCEs). By announcements on radio, some of them were nominated as DCEs, and were approved. Today, they are also Hon Members of Parliament.
Mr Speaker, the late Steve Akorli, showed his method, and in fact, did so well that even after he voluntarily decided not to contest the 2004 elections, Parliament decided to tap the treasure of knowledge and experience in him and he was made to join the Parliamentary Service Board. It is in that role, as the Hon Emmanuel Bedzrah stated, that he as an Hon Member of the Technical Committee led the Parliamentary Service Board to be able to restructure the Job 600 Building, which now serves as an iconic place for the work of Hon Members of Parliament.
Mr Speaker, therefore, I really was struck, because I spoke to him not long ago. I was shocked that he just died without a word, but I was told that he was taken ill and was admitted at the Ho Regional Hospital. It turned rather bad, and he had to be rushed to the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital where he died.
Mr Speaker, I would want to reiterate what the Hon Minority Chief Whip stated. As we serve our people in this House, we should do everything to take care of our health. It is very difficult because of the nature of the service, but it is a good advice. We should try as much as possible to take good care of our health.
Mr Speaker, it is with this that I would want to urge the Parliamentary Service to try to provide a place where Hon Members could conveniently access some food to eat. That is one of the serious challenges of this House. We always try to go round looking for food, and as I stand here, I am suffering it because for many years, I have not always been able to access lunch. This is because it is difficult to get it around this place, and the time we waste to drive somewhere to go and take lunch could have been used to do something to serve our constituencies.
Mr Speaker, I believe that it is a fact that many of our former Hon Members have died as a result of the drudgery that they have gone through in this House. People are only looking at the glamour of people that sit in Land Cruisers. They do not know that even when they are in the air
conditioned Land Cruisers, they still sweat.
Mr Speaker, it is only when Hon Members come to this House that they realise that all that glitters is not gold. As the anchor of the former Hon Members of Parliament, we have an association, and I have a list of all those who are demised, and it is so frightening. I know a number of Hon Members who sat and talked with their constituents, they collapsed there and died immediately, and all that the constituents did was to just leave the dead body and walk away for the family to take care of.
Mr Speaker, I believe that we should re-look at that association, and see what we could put in place like other mature Parliaments. Mature Parliaments have put some schemes in place to take care of Hon Members of Parliament and their spouses, even when Members were no longer Hon Members of Parliament. This is because there are no retirement benefits for Hon Members of Parliament, and we all know that what we call the ex-gratia are securities for facilities to contest for elections.
Mr Speaker, therefore, when we take that facility and contest the elections and are no longer elected, we go out in debt, and there is so much stress and pressure on us such that we take off within a very short time.
Mr Speaker, I believe that these things should be lessons for all of us,
and I know that my Hon Colleague have gone not in glamour, but at least, he has left a legacy for the people of Ghana. He would be remembered for all that they did to establish the Ministry of Roads and Transport at that time, which is now split into so many Ministries -- Roads and Highways, Transport, Aviation, including Railways were all merged into one Ministry, the Ministry of Roads and Transport, and as a trade brawler, we know how they suffered, but what else can we say? We are here as players, and when our time is up, there is no turning back. When death is on you, it is on you, and it would come when it would come. So, it is his turn.
Mr Speaker, I know as the rock of ages in this House that he is a legend of Parliamentary practice in Ghana, and I know the role that he has played as a Parliamentarian of global action, and the submissions he made to the Canadian Parliament for and on behalf of this House, and all that he did to make sure that we are here as a better positioned House than it was before.
Mr Speaker, I mentioned that we were the guinea pigs, and many people do not understand that the First Parliament of the Fourth Republic had no conditions of service. The first report of the Presidential Committee was in 1998, and that was in the Second Parliament, and is the Greenstreet Report.
Mr Speaker, from 1993 to 1996, there were no conditions of service and whatever was given us, we accepted it because we were serving