The Speaker of Parliament, Rt Hon Alban Sumana Kingsford Bagbin, has intervened in the apparent impasse between the Majority Caucus and the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) regarding attempts to reshuffle their parliamentary leadership.

This comes after First Deputy Speaker, Joseph Osei-Owusu, cited the new standing orders to assert that decisions on leadership changes within the caucus rest with the MPs. Addressing the media following reports of Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu’s removal as Majority Leader,

“The leadership of the Majority has not changed, we have not contemplated changing and we have no intention to effect any change in the leadership of the majority caucus. The Parliament of Ghana has adopted standing orders that place the selection and change or otherwise of leadership in the hands of the caucus and not anybody inside parliament.”

Asked whether there was an external attempt to remove Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu as the Majority Leader, he answered: “I am not aware of such a thing, nobody has discussed that with the caucus and since nobody has the power to do that outside the caucus there may be rumours and intricacies but we in parliament are not aware of any attempt to remove anybody.”

But on the floor of the House on Wednesday, February 21, 2024, the Tamale North MP, Alhassan Suhuyini, brought the matter to the speaker’s attention seeking clarification on the position of the new standing orders of the house on the selection of caucus leaders.

In response, the speaker clarified that while the new standing orders grant powers to the caucuses in choosing leaders, such decisions must be made per the direction of the party.

“I have heard, listened and I know that the parties are having problems with this new definition of the new leaders, that is only where this confusion is coming from. The old order refers to party or parties, but this new one does not refer to a party but caucuses.

“The old order defines the majority leader to mean a member of parliament designated by the party or parties holding the majority of the seats as their recognized leader in the house. Now this new order says designate means appoints.

“The same standing orders talk about the majority caucus, and it says majority caucus means the members of the party or parties that have the largest number of seats. I don’t see the difference, the caucus is the party wing. That is the wing of the party in parliament.”

“You cannot be talking about appointing or designating your leaders without the party leading the process. I don’t understand that, it’s the same definition here.”

Joseph Osei-Owusu who also doubles as the MP for Bekwai, however, disagreed, arguing that the caucus should instead lead such initiatives but in consultation with the party.