Parliament last Saturday endorsed the election of Professor Aaron Mike Oquaye, a former Deputy Speaker of Parliament, as Speaker of the Seventh Parliament of the Fourth Republic.

He subscribed to the Oath of Allegiance and Speaker’s Oath administered by the Chief Justice, Mrs Georgina Theodora Wood.

The House also endorsed the nomination and election of Mr Joseph Osei-Owusu, Member of Parliament (MP) for Bekwai, as First Deputy Speaker, and Mr Alban Sumana Kingsford Bagbin, immediate past Majority Leader and MP for Nadoli-Kaleo, as Second Deputy Speaker.


In his inaugural speech, Prof. Oquaye, who is also a former legislator for Dome-Kwabenya, described his election as “homecoming, albeit with a greater responsibility.”

“I am grateful to all who reposed resounding trust in me to make this possible. I pray to the Almighty God that I shall successfully travel the path pursued by various Speakers,” he said.

He congratulated the members on winning their seats, saying, “it is a unique opportunity to serve our dear nation”, and promised to maximise the opportunities for every member to contribute.

Prof. Oquaye expressed the hope that the experienced MPs would mentor the upcoming ones and called on “those who sit in front to please learn to look behind them to allow others to contribute.”

He also urged them to remember that whereas they cannot normally see from the back of their heads, the Speaker has been placed in a position to catch every eye.

“I intend to be fair to all and, therefore, seek your understanding in advance,” he promised.

Parliamentary procedures

Prof. Oquaye reminded the new MPs to keep themselves abreast of parliamentary procedures and learn seriously in order to sharpen their competencies to function optimally.

He promised to encourage healthy debates and urged both the Majority and Minority to be guided by the mandate given to the government to build a vibrant society anchored on the principles of fairness and equality of opportunities.

“Ghanaians everywhere are looking up to Parliament and government for the solutions to the problems that confront them on a daily basis. It cannot be business as usual. Our people expect us to help fix the economy, provide jobs for the unemployed, improve access and quality of education, health care and generally give them hope.”

“This Parliament is for the people of Ghana and they want us to be honest, accountable and responsive to their needs.  I ask for cooperation from all and sundry to make our stewardship a success,” he stated.

Second Chamber

The Majority Leader, Mr Osei Kyei-Mensa-Bonsu, expressed the hope that the election of Prof. Mike Oquaye would facilitate the creation of a Second Chamber of the House.

The Minority Leader, Mr Haruna Iddrissu, congratulated the Speaker and the two deputies at the ceremony.

Among the invited guests were former President Jerry John Rawlings and his wife Nana Konadu Agyeman Rawlings; Mr Ebenezer Begyina Sekyi Hughes, former Speaker of Parliament, and his wife; former clerks of Parliament, Nana Rex Owusu Ansah and Mr Aggrey Orleans, a retired Diplomat.

Also present were party bigwigs and spouses of the legislators.