Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin has called on Members and Staff of Parliament to comply with the assets declaration laws of the land.
According to him, for the House to be able to hold the government and other state institutions to account, it ought to lead by example and follow to the letter the constitutional imperatives.
In an address to welcome MPs from recess on Tuesday, May 25, 2022, Mr Bagbin said as part of the agenda for this meeting and the rest of the session will dedicate more attention to its oversight function.
“While we continue to put in all legal efforts and processes to consolidate the strengthening of the Institution of Parliament and the empowerment of members to perform their duties and responsibilities effectively and responsively, in this second session, we will take further vigorous steps to strengthen the hand of the House to hold government and state institutions accountable to the people for the power, trust, resources and hope reposed in them. The executive President, assisted by the cabinet and state institutions, shall be called upon to account for the stewardship of the country.”
“To succeed to implement this agenda, Parliament itself must be open, transparent and accountable to the people. As the saying goes, “Charity begins at home”. As the constitutional and legal head of the institution of Parliament, the spokesperson, the arbitrator and guarantor of its authority, independence and privileges, I pledge to lead this effort by example.”
Explaining further, he said together with the leadership of the House discussions have been initiated with “relevant state actors to put in place measures and systems to ensure that all members and staff of Parliament complies with the declaration of assets regulations, tax obligations are honoured on time and all outstanding issues of overpayment and underpayment reported on by the Auditor General, from 2001 to 2008 and 2009 to 2016 are retired and settled without any further delay, by all affected members and former members of Parliament. Sooner than later, members will be informed through the usual channels about how this will be done. A team will be put in place to liaise with state and non-state actors to smoothen the compliance and implementation of these initiatives,” he said.