Speaker of Parliament deems Minority caucus boycott without official communication a breach of Parliament’s standing Orders

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Speaker of Parliament deems Minority caucus boycott without official communication a breach of Parliament's standing Orders
Speaker of Parliament Alban Bagbin

The Speaker of , Mr. , has stated that the boycott of Parliamentary Proceedings by the , without any official communication, is a violation of the House's Standing Orders.

He explained that according to the Standing Orders of , an MP is expected to vacate their seat if they are absent for 15 sittings without permission from the Speaker and fail to provide a reasonable explanation.

Mr Bagbin made these remarks during a session of the House when Mr Samuel , MP for , raised concerns about the absence of the 137 National Democratic Congress () MPs during the 19th sitting on Tuesday, July 11.

Mr Ablakwa argued that it was inappropriate to mark all MPs as absent when they were supposed to be marked as “Absent with Permission.”

This followed Dr. Cassiel Ato-Baah Forson's declaration that the Caucus would boycott proceedings whenever any of their members attended a court hearing.

However, Mr. Bagbin ruled that the boycott was unjustified without any formal communication to him. He emphasized that the burden was on the caucus to provide written evidence of his permission to be absent in such circumstances, rather than relying on verbal communication.

The in Parliament boycotted the proceedings on Tuesday, July 11, 2023, to show support for the trial of Mr , the MP for . They also boycotted the proceedings on Tuesday, July 4, to accompany their colleague to court.

The caucus believes that the trial of Mr Quayson is unfair and should be dropped by the and Minister for Justice, Mr .

In response to the caucus's actions, the High Court in dismissed Mr Quayson's application for a stay of proceedings. He is facing charges of forgery and perjury.

Mr. Tsatsu Tsikata, lead counsel for Mr. Quayson, has announced their intention to apply for a stay of proceedings with the Court of Appeal.

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