General News of Thursday, 7 December 2017
The First Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Mr Joseph Osei-Owusu, has charged members of the Parliamentary Press Corps (PPC) to expose parliamentarians he described as “bad nuts”.
Mr Osei-Owusu advised journalists to isolate Members of Parliament (MPs) who misconduct themselves and expose them individually.
“The institution of Parliament must be promoted to be held sacred for you [journalists] to continue to be relevant in your work. But if I misconduct myself, please join in the crusade to isolate me.
“I am seen as the bad nut of the organisation and must be removed so my cancerous behaviour does not spread within the organisation,” he advised.
Mr Osei-Owusu said this at a training programme organised for members of the PPC last Monday.
The Bekwai MP lamented how the moral fabric of the country had decayed with corruption manifesting in all facets of life.
“We should discuss corruption in a way that will make everybody feel part, so that everybody will examine him or herself,” he said, and added that the perception that all elected officers were corrupt was not helping issues.
“My everyday dealings with people—right from the farm gate to my party boy that I’m sending —I can see everybody is skimming from somebody else and yet because I’m the elected official, I’m the one who is corrupt,” he said.
He cautioned journalists to be balanced in their reportage as they covered the different political parties represented in the House.
For his part, the Minority Leader, Mr Haruna Iddrisu, also entreated journalists to be fearless in reporting to ensure good governance in the country.
“We cannot achieve openness, transparency and accountability values as a country without an independent, fearless press corps….for Parliament to be open, you have to be critical; for Parliament to be accountable, you have to be critical; and for Parliament to be transparent, you play an overriding role,” he stressed.
The Tamale South MP entreated the journalists to arm themselves with good research into the subject that was being discussed on the House to enrich their questioning so as to serve their listeners and readers well.
Meanwhile, the acting Public Affairs Director of Parliament, Ms Kate Addo, urged journalists to be more independent as practitioners.
She also advised journalists to be on top of their game as they went about their job in the House to earn respect from the MPs.