National Chairman of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Johnson Asiedu Nketiah has given another reason for which the party reshuffled its leadership in Parliament.
Having earlier defended the decision to ring the changes amid the backlash from some Members of Parliament, the former party General Secretary revealed at a party gathering in London that a key reason was lack of cooperation between the outgone leadership and Alban Bagbin, the Speaker of Parliament.
He explained that there was no need to fight to elect a Speaker from the party yet turn round and be giving the Speaker problems at a time even the Majority Caucus maintained a cordial relationship with him.
What Asiedu Nketiah said:
“My priorities in Parliament, is to see our parliamentary caucus working together and also cooperating with the Speaker of Parliament.
“Why did we struggle to get an NDC person elected as the Speaker of Parliament? There are certainly some advantages and those advantages can be tapped into when your leadership is cooperating with the Speaker,” the National Chairman stated.
He continued: “So we cannot have a situation where the NPP leadership is cooperating with the Speaker while our leadership the NDC have challenges in cooperating with the Speaker.
“If you are given a party whose leadership in Parliament is not working together what will you do? You make the changes or you resign and I am not ready to resign.”
Asiedu Nketiah was addressing the NDC UK/Ireland Chapter during a visit to London where he accompanied former president John Dramani Mahama for a public lecture engagement at Chatham House.
General Mosquito as he is referred to, also stated that the party held consultations contrary to the view out there, but that it was the national executives who eventually took the decision because they are clothed with the capacity so to do.
Bagbin appoints Asiedu Nketiah to PSB
Asiedu Nketiah is a member of the Parliamentary Service Board (PSB), a position that he assumed when Bagbin became speaker.
Speaker Bagbin has routinely gotten into heated exchanges especially with Member of Parliament for Asawase Mohammed Mubarak-Muntaka, who incidentally was very influential in the processes that led to the election of Bagbin into office on the morning of January 7, 2021.
Bagbin had cause to ‘threaten’ Muntaka in November 2022 when they clashed over the procedure Bagbin wanted to adopt in a Censorship Motion brought by the Minority against Minister of Finance, Ken Ofori-Atta.
Muntaka during proceedings on November 11 vehemently disagreed with Bagbin’s decision to refer the censorship motion to a committee, interrupting him a number of times much to Bagbin’s chagrin
“Mr. Speaker, I come to second the motion with the clear indication that any attempt to move this matter to a committee will be a travesty of justice done to the chamber of this House.
Then the Speaker retorted again: “Hon. Members, I direct that all that the Minority Chief Whip has said after I have told him to withdraw and apologize, be expunged from the records. I so direct. Hansard expunge everything from the record.
“Minority Chief Whip, you’ll have a difficulty in catching my eye again,” reference to getting to speak again during the session.