The Minority in Parliament has stayed out of a voting process to approve the nomination of Otiko Afisa Djaba as the Gender Minister.
Although the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) Members of Parliament (MPs) are inside the chamber, they have refused to cast their ballot which is either to approve or disapprove the ministerial nominee.
Deputy Minority leader, James Klutsey Avedzi who disclosed the news said they do not want to be part of any process that amounts to an illegality.
“For us, we think the approval of this lady [Madam Djaba] is full of illegality,” he told Evans Mensah, host of Joy FM’s Top Story programme Tuesday.
The governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) dominated legislature has faced some difficulty pushing through with the approval of the Gender Minister-designate. The NDC MPs have frustrated the efforts by NPP MPs in approving her.
They scuttled the approval of Energy Minister, Boakye Agyarko and Senior Minister, Yaw Osafo Maafo for some comments made prior to the December 7, 2016 general elections. It took the apology of the nominees before they were approved by consensus.
Although the minority has cited the failure of Madam Djaba to do her national service as the reason for its opposition, sections of Ghanaians think otherwise. They believe the NDC MPs are against the approval of the former NPP Women Organiser because of some comments she made against former President John Mahama.
Gender Minister-designate, Otiko Afisa Djaba
The Gender Minister-designate had described the former Ghanaian leader as a man with a devil’s heart and a “wicked” man.
When she was asked to retract those comments, Madam Djaba said she would not apologise because she has the right to criticise the leaders of the country.
Though outnumbered by the NPP MPs, Mr Avedzi said they are not taking part in the voting process because their views have been ignored in the House.
“The minority leader, Haruna Iddrisu stood for two minutes and the speaker, Professor Mike Aaron Ocquaye failed to allow him to speak,” he lamented.
“If you don’t want to hear our voice do you want to take our vote?” he asked.
Per Standing Orders of the House, Madam Djaba would stand approved by a simple majority because the number of MPs on the floor are more than 50% of the total number of MPs.
Meanwhile, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo is awaiting the approval of Madam Djaba to swear her and other recently approved nominees at the State House in Accra.
Joy News’ Flagstaff House Correspondent, Elton Brobbey said the Gender Minister-designate is seated by recently approved Science and Technology Minister-designate, Professor Frimpong Boateng to be taken through the swearing in process.
Madam Djaba’s name is the fifth on the list of nominees due to be sworn in by the President, the reporter said.