A Member of the Defence and Interior Committee of Parliament, Rev. Hon. Helen Adjoa Ntoso, has questioned the fairness of parliamentarians to Ghanaians for continued sitting in parliament when security personnel are arresting Pastors for flouting the President’s Directives on public gathering to reduce the risk of infection of the Coronavirus.
According to her, she found it fundamentally wrong for the Legislators to continue to sit in the Chamber to make laws at the time Pastors and other citizens are being harassed for flouting the presidential directives .
Rev Helen Ntoso made this comment on Friday March 20, whilst contributing to the Business Statement presented to the House by the Majority Leader, Hon Kyei Mensah-Bonsu, for the next week sitting.
The President in his directive stated that, all public gatherings should not be more than 25 persons in attendance. He also directed that churches, mosques and conferences should be suspended for four weeks as a protective measure against COVID-19 pandemic.
Rev Hon Ntoso who is also the Member of Parliament for Krachi West constituency, questioned why parliament continues sitting in contravention to the President’s directive when pastors are being arrested for same offense.
She contended that, Parliament as a legislative body ought to lead by exemple by suspending sitting for four weeks as directed to monitor the situation.
“Mr Speaker, we are told or heard that two pastors have been arrested for flouting the President’s directive but we as parliamentarians are suppose to set good example. As we are gathered here we are more than 50 people, meanwhile pastors are being arrested for flouting the President order. So I think we are not being fair to the good people of Ghana, ” she argued extensively.
She added that, the masks that are given to MPs as part of protective measures in the Chambers indicates that parliament itself is not a safe place and that if parliament is still not safe then there was no need for sitting to conduct parliamentary business.
Rev.Ntoso also drew parliament’ attention to many visitors coming to parliament, especially the MPs Coffee Shop, arguing that, it puts the MPs at risk of the deadly Coronavirus since the status of the visitors are not known.
The Coronavirus, she noted has no political party colors and is no respecter of persons.
Other MPs who contributed to the Business Statement expressed similar sentiments and called for parliament to take a decision as to the best way to protect members as some of them had to be self quarantined upon returned from outside the country.
Meanwhile the Minority caucus has also hinted of filing a motion to drag the Minister for Monitoring and Evaluation to appear before the House to explain why the National Identification Authority (NIA) continues with its national registration exercises in the Eastern Region despite the President directives.
Since the outbreak of the deadly Coronavirus, Ghana has recorded about 16 cases as at Friday March 20.