Policy think thank Alliance for Social Equity and Public Accountability (ASEPA), is demanding immediate closure of Ghana’s Parliament and Members and Staff placed on mandatory two-weeks quarantine.
This assertion follows the recent dramatic turn of events in the law making House where the leadership of the Majority conived with the Clerk-to-Parliament Cyril Nsiah, Director of Public Affairs, Kate Addo and the Director of Medical Services, Dr Prince Pambo to deny news reports that two MPs and 13 staff of the Parliamentary service had tested positive for Coronavirus.
ASEPA is of the view that since there are no urgent Parliamentary business before the House now, a temporal suspension of Parliament for two weeks would not cause any serious ramifications and that “all other Parliamentary duties can be performed virtually,” a statement from the Executive Director of ASEPA, Mensah Thompson noted.
Read the full statement below:
ASEPA CALLS FOR THE IMMEDIATE CLOSURE OF PARLIAMENT FOR TWO WEEKS FOR MPs TO SELF-QUARANTINE
Yesterday there were reports making waves in the media that following the mass testing of MPs and parliamentary Staff, some two Members of Parliament and some Parliamentary Staffs may have tested positive to the deadly COVID-19 disease.
Subsequently, the Public Affairs Directorate of Parliament came out quickly with a statement to deny this information.
Today, following a discussion on the floor of Parliament, it seems the reports that made rounds in the media space was very true contrary to the disclaimer issued by Madam Kate Addo of the Public Affairs unit.
Following this revelation, we are calling for the immediate closure of Parliament for two weeks and a mandatory self quarantine of all Members of Parliament and Parliament Staffs.
This would make way for the entire Parliament to be fumigated extensively and the Chamber seriously disinfected to make it wholesome and habitable after the two weeks period.
As we speak, there are no Emergency Bills before Parliament, all COVID-19 Bills have been duly approved and and so we can afford to suspend Parliament for two weeks without any serious ramifications, all other Parliamentary duties can be performed virtually.
We must do this immediately to prevent cross infections in Parliament and also to prevent onward Community Transmission at the various Constituencies where the MPs visit almost every weekend.
But most importantly to prevent unnecessary financial burden on the State through needless by-elections if any MP loses their life to COVID-19.
Executive Director, ASEPA
The Speaker of Parliament
The Parliamentary Service Board
The Majority Leader
The Minority Leader
The Minister for Health
The Ghana Health Service
The Country Rep, WHO