BY: Mary Quartey
Speaker of Parliament Alban Sumana Kingsford Bagbin have stated that he won’t accept the reduction of budgetary allocation for Parliament which has been reduced by GH¢119 million.
This was contained in two separate letters from the Office of the President read to the house at the commencement of sitting on Tuesday,16 March,2021 in respect of the budget estimates to Parliament and the Parliamentary Service as well as the Judiciary. The Speaker explained that it is Parliament that is vested with power to decide the budget of arms of government, and not the power of the Executive to cap budget of the two bodies.
“Respectfully, I’m unable to accept such reduction,” he stated
However, the former Nadowli-Kaleo legislator informed the August House that he has officially replied the president asking him to reconsider the decision to slash the budgetary allocation to the House, which is in dire need of adequate funding to function effectively.
“The budget is not for the executive, we have the final power to approve or disapprove and so what the constitution has done is for them to make recommendations and negotiate during the deliberations of the budget before the House… It’s not for the executive to impose ceiling on the Judiciary or Parliament. We’ve to do the right thing,” He said.
“So far as I remain the Speaker of this House, I’ll insist that the right thing is done.”
He thus threatened not to forward the appropriation bill to the president for his assent when passed if “the right thing is not done.”
Stressing further, he therefore charged committees particularly those concerned with the budget estimate saying,”And so during the considerations of the (budget)estimate, particularly the committees concerned, take that on board and at the end of the day come and explain to us the negotiated figure and not the ceiling that has been given by the president, that is not the internment of the 1992 Constitution.
“If you do otherwise, I as your Speaker will not affirm any letter for submission to the President for his assent, I mean what I am saying.”