New ‘Kings’ Take Over NDC Bench In Parliament

Dr. Cassiel Ato Forson


SOME NEW National Democratic Congress (NDC) MPs who were promoted in an opposition reshuffle in Parliament took their seats on the Minority frontbench yesterday, leapfrogging into action and being recognised by the House.

The new Minority Leader, Dr. Cassiel Ato Forson and his team were introduced by the Speaker of Parliament, Alban S.K. Bagbin, who promised to assist them in their new roles.

“Before I proceed further, let me recognise the new leadership of the Minority Caucus in Parliament. I was formally informed of the reshuffle of the leadership by the General Secretary of the National Democratic Congress, Hon Fiifi Fiavi Kwetey by a letter dated January 23, 2023,” he stated.

The other members of the Minority     Caucus, who have been brought forward for new opportunities, are Emmanuel Armah Kofi Buah, Deputy Minority Leader; and Kwame Governs Agbodza, Minority Chief Whip.

They were promoted to the frontbench by the NDC’s new leadership, led by Johnson Asiedu Nketia, aka General Mosquito, while some former National Chairman Samuel Ofosu Ampofo’s allies were demoted.

The three would be aided by Ahmed Ibrahim and Comfort Doyoe Ghansah, who were retained by the NDC as First Deputy Whip and Second Deputy Whip, respectively.

Dr. Ato Forson, MP for Ajumako Enyan Essiam, has taken over the seat of Haruna Iddrisu, while Emmanuel Armah Kofi Buah and Kwame Governs Agbodza have taken over the seats of James Klutse Avedzi and Moahmmed-Mubarak Muntaka.

The opposition frontbenchers are thought to be shadow ministers tasked with scrutinising – closely examining – the work of ministers and their portfolios.

Former Leaders Missing

When the House resumed business, the immediate past Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu (NDC MP for Tamale South), and his lieutenant, Mohammed-Mubarak Muntaka, were conspicuously absent from the chamber.

The two had passed through the chamber briefly to sign up for attendance, but had left unceremoniously without returning, implying that things had not normalised for them.

The caucus also struggled with the seating changes, as one senior MP, Collins Dauda, found it difficult to hand over his seat to Haruna Iddrisu.

Ato’s Message

In a message to the House, the new Minority Leader, Dr. Ato Forson said, “I have the unique honour of being entrusted with the leadership of the Minority Caucus for the Eighth Parliament of the Fourth Republic.”

He, on behalf of his colleagues, conveyed their profound gratitude to their party for the opportunity to serve and help shape the trajectory of Parliament.

He said he would endeavour to continue on the path charted by his predecessor and live up to the standard set by Haruna in his leadership.

Dr. Forson pledged the Minority’s commitment to offer a fair and unbiased consultative leadership to broaden the frontiers of parliamentary oversight, while holding the government to account.

“To my colleagues on the Majority side, I wish to convey from this side of the House that even as we remain firm, resolute and principled in our journey to discharge our oversight responsibility as a caucus, we shall not be needlessly obstructionist in as much as what is under consideration is in the interest of the people of Ghana,” he posited.

By Ernest Kofi Adu, Parliament House


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