The Minority members of Parliament Thursday clashed with the Speaker of the House, Professor Mike Oquaye, accusing him of bias for the umpteenth time.
The verbal fracas started during the passage of the Special Petroleum Tax (Amendment) Bill, 2018 where Minority Chief Whip Muntaka Mubarak described the quantum of decrease in fuel prices as a deceitful, Starr News’ Parliamentary Correspondent Ibrahim Alhassan reported.
The Asawase MP was compelled by the Speaker to withdraw the word. He later returned to raise an issue of lack of quorum only to be ignored by the Speaker again.
This brought in the Minority Leader Haruna Iddrisu who had strong words for the Speaker after being made to stand on his feet for a while without recognition.
“…So, if I rose Mr. Speaker you owe me. I don’t want to ever disrespect you. But, if you invite me I would,” said Mr. Haruna, immediately sending the House into chaos.
Feared for being misconstrued, the Minority leader clarified his comments by saying: “I say I don’t ever want to disrespect him because I owe him respect. But, I’m saying he must respect me as Minority Leader and when I stand on the rules, he must as reciprocity [allow me to speak].”
On his part, the Minority spokesperson on Communications, A.B.A Fuseini slammed the Speaker as a despot and bias.
“You cannot gag the Minority. The Speaker has no right whatsoever to prevent the Minority from having its say,” he said in an interview with Ibrahim.
According to the Sanerigu MP, the Speaker as a father of the House is obligated to be impartial in his handling of the Parliamentary proceedings.
“But, the Speaker is acting like he is a despot like he is a monarch. And we are reminding the Speaker that he is not a monarch. He didn’t inherit the position of Speaker from his father. He was nominated and the majority of members of this House voted for him as Speaker,” he said.
The majority leadership has, however, mounted a religious defense for the action of the speaker.
Deputy Chief Whip Matthew Nyindam argued the speaker did no wrong. The Kpandai MP rather finds fault with the attitude of the Minority leader.