Executive Director of the African Center for Parliamentary Affairs (ACEPA), Dr. Rasheed Draman, has strongly condemned the boycott of parliament budget by the minority in parliament, calling it detrimental to our democratic process as a country and softening the citizenry.
This follows the prosecution of the Member of Parliament for Assin North, the Honorable James Gyakye Quayson, and Minority Leader, Ato Forson.
Dr. Rasheed Draman was speaking at a media engagement yesterday.
According to him, he is hoping for a peaceful dialogue to ensue between sides in the parliament. He stated that that would ensure democracy prevails regardless of views.
“We have all democracies, we have said even in the US and other places, the tears come to a head and almost breaking points. But at the end of the day, dialogue is what has prevailed and what has brought countries back from the break. So I think we don’t have any other alternative or platform ensuring dialogue. And like I said earlier, we’ve seen many instances when we thought that things were coming to a breaking point in our parliament. But the leadership of parliament has risen to those challenges. And the two sides have been brought together and some cool heads have prevailed. And I think on this occasion that is also possible. Because at the end of the day, what we want is a functioning democracy. We don’t want a one -sided house. That is so good for us. It is a citizenry that is going to be shortchanged.”
He also called for an urgent conversation in parliament to address the growing concerns about the justice delivery system in the country. He warned that if these issues are not addressed, it could lead to anarchy and chaos.
“We have a free delivery system in our country. If that is the case, I think there should be some conversation in parliament about this. Parliament is a forum best place to address any matter of concern, any matter of public interest in our republic. If parliamentarians are complaining about justice delivery, there might be millions of our compatriots who are also suffering. So if this is a matter of concern, I think members of parliament should be bold enough to call it as it is. Let’s have some national conversation.”