Mahama chides SC over affirming Deputy Speakers voting right

Former President John Dramani Mahama has chided the Supreme Court’s (SC) unanimous verdict that Deputy Speakers of Parliament can vote while presiding, as setting a dangerous precedence for the country’s parliamentary procedure.

He has described the verdict by the apex court as “shocking but not surprising.”

According to him, Wednesday’s ruling was “an unfortunate interpretation for convenience that sets a dangerous precedent of judicial interference in parliamentary procedure for the future.”

The Supreme Court presided over by Justice Jones Dotse ruled that a Deputy Speaker can be counted during the formation of a quorum for parliamentary decision-making and participate in voting while presiding over the parliamentary business.

But Mr Mahama believes the 7-0 ruling affects the independence of the legislative arm of government and may affect future deliberations in the House.

Relatedly, the Minority in Parliament has described the ruling of the court as politically motivated and one-sided.

Minority Chief Whip, Muntaka Mubarak, says the position of the Supreme Court is an “attack on the legislature.”

He said the Minority would, within one month, seek a review of the ruling by the Court.

Also, the Ningo-Prampram Member of Parliament, Sam George, has asserted the Minority in Parliament will employ any legal means within parliamentary procedure to stop a Deputy Speaker from voting when presiding over proceedings of the House.

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