A leading member of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Gabby Asare Otchere-Darko, has jumped to the defense of the first deputy speaker, Joe Osei Wusu, after he counted himself as part of Members of parliament present to make the majority in the House for the budget approval.
The Minority at a press conference post the approval of the budget, criticized the acting speaker of parliament for his actions on parliamentary sittings on Tuesday November 30, 2021.
Referencing Article 104(2) and Standing Orders in 109(2), the minority argued that the acting speaker could not have voted to approve the budget.
But taking to social media, Gabby Asare Otchere Darko justified the actions of the speaker, denying that he participated in the voting process.
“No, Minority Leader, the Deputy Speaker today did not vote. He was only counted as present in the House in his capacity as MP for Bekwai and he did not vote and needn’t vote because once half of members are present only the majority of that number needed to vote “aye!” he said in a tweet on Tuesday November 30, 2021.
No, Minority Leader, the Deputy Speaker today did not vote. He was only counted as present in the House in his capacity as MP for Bekwai and he did not vote and needn’t vote because once half of members are present only the majority of that number needed to vote “aye!”
— Gabby Otchere-Darko (@GabbyDarko) November 30, 2021
Parliament on Tuesday November 30, 2021 reconvened in what promised to be a showdown between the majority and minority over their disagreements on whether or not the budget statement had been rejected.
However, the minority failed to show up for unexplained reasons leaving the majority MPs to overturn the rejection of the budget.
Prior to this, the First Deputy Speaker Joe Osei Wusu who presided over the sitting directed for a headcount to be sure at least more than half of MPs were present and ready to vote.
In an interesting twist he counted himself as part of to make up the constitutional number to take a decision.
“Honorable members, the numbers presented to me by the Clerks at table is 137 of you plus me, MP for Bekwai, 138” he announced.
Having succeeded in overturning the rejection by the minority MPs, the finance minister moved for the budget to be adopted to which the one-sided majority MPs approved.