General News of Friday, 10 February 2017
The Member of Parliament for Effutu, Alexander Afenyo-Markin, today [Friday], has withdrawn from Ghana’s delegation to the ECOWAS Parliament, to save Ghana further embarrassment, following confusion that broke out on Friday, on the number that should make up the delegation.
A letter seen by Citi News from the leader of Ghana’s delegation, Kwasi Ameyaw-Cheremeh to the Speaker of ECOWAS’ Parliament, communicated Mr. Afenyo-Markin’s decision to step down.
The letter explained that this was to accommodate the MP for Suhum, Fred Opare Ansah.
This happened after the Speaker of the ECOWAS Parliament had declined to swear in the reconstituted Ghanaian delegation, because of what sources called a “major confusion” over the membership of the delegation, when the House reopened for business on Friday in Abuja, Nigeria.
The confusion was sparked by the refusal of Fred Opare Ansah to step down as a Member of the delegation, after he had served notice to continue as a member because he was still a member of Parliament in Ghana.
Ghana has eight seats in the ECOWAS Parliament, but by Mr. Opare Ansah’s refusal to step down, the Ghanaian delegation jumped to nine.
The Suhum MP had been a member of the ECOWAS Parliament until the Majority Leadership reconstituted the Ghanaian delegation with O.B Amoah, MP for Akwapim South; Ama Pomaah Boateng Andoh MP for Juaben; Alexander Afenyo-Markin, Effutu MP; Kwabena Appiah-Pinkra MP for Akrofuom; MP for Anlo, Clement Kofi Humado; Mahama Ayariga, the Bawku Central MP and Sampson Ahi, MP for Bodi.
But some sources say the decision to reconstitute the delegation was taken without any formal communication to the Suhum MP.
Despite Mr. Afenyo-Markin’s withdrawal, the authorities in Abuja insisted on further clarifications from Accra before swearing in the Ghanaian delegation.
The Speaker of the ECOWAS Parliament during the swearing in, reportedly heaped praises on Mr. Afenyo-Markin for his decision to withdraw from the delegation to save Ghana further embarrassment.
Afenyo-Markin, a young vociferous MP, was the youngest among the delegation. A member of the delegation, an MP who does not want to be named, has lauded the young MP for his magnanimous act.
He said “In fact, the foreign media has picked it and the speaker publicly commended Markin for his decision describing him as a great politician. Other members from the sub-region took turns to congratulate Markin for his decision with a round of applauds on the floor of the house during the plenary. Markin has really done well for Ghana. I never expected it from him. I respect him because nobody from their side was ready to drop. The decision was for us to come to Ghana with shame. To be frank, I thought he was ambitious; but now he’s earned my respect.”
Why did this happen?
Although it is unclear why this mess occurred, Citi News sources suggests that some factionalism within the leadership of the NPP in Parliament, and perceived dislike for the young ambitious MP, Afenyo-markin by some persons, may have caused it.