Speaker Lied Over South Dayi MP Injunction Against New Ministers

Alban Bagbin

In an official statement today, the Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Godfred Yeboah Dame, addressed the ongoing controversy surrounding the vetting of Ministerial nominees in Parliament.

The A-G revealed that a search conducted at the Registry of the Supreme Court indicated that no injunction application had been filed by the plaintiff, Member of Parliament (MP) Hon. Rockson Nelson Dafeamekpor, to halt the vetting process, indicating that Speaker Bagbin peddled falsehood when he halted parliamentary sitting on Wednesday.

Furthermore, Mr. Dame highlighted that the lawsuit filed by the MP was deemed irregular and insufficient grounds for Parliament to abstain from vetting the President’s nominees.

This statement comes in response to the suspension of approval process for Ministers and Deputy Ministers of State nominated by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, as announced by the Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin, on Wednesday, March 20.

Speaker Bagbin’s decision was prompted by an interlocutory injunction filed at the Supreme Court by the Member of Parliament (MP) for South Dayi, Rockson-Nelson Etse K. Dafeamekpor.

According to Bagbin, this injunction rendered Parliament unable to sanction new ministers nominated by President Akufo-Addo and vetted by Parliament.

The suspension followed a directive from the presidency, restraining Parliament from transmitting the Bill on Human Sexual Rights and Family Values for President Akufo-Addo’s assent, citing an ongoing interlocutory application at the Supreme Court.

In an official response to Bagbin, Godfred Yeboah Dame pointed out that there was no risk of prejudice to the authority of the Supreme Court if Parliament continued with the approval processes for the nominees.

He argued that the substance of Mr. Dafeamekpor’s suit did not affect the approval of newly nominated ministers and deputy ministers who have been vetted by parliament.

Mr. Dame indicated that the essence of Dafeamekpor’s suit was a challenge to the President’s power to relieve ministers and reassign them to different ministries, which did not impact the approval process for new nominees as prescribed by the constitution.

“The substance of Mr Dafeamekpor’s suit is a challenge on the power of the President to relieve Ministers serving in his government of their portfolios and reassign them to different Ministries.”

“It has no bearing on the approval of persons newly nominated by the President as Ministers and Deputy Ministers and duly presented to Parliament for approval in accordance with articles 78(1) and 79 (1) of the constitution.”

By Vincent Kubi