General News of Thursday, 7 December 2017
Majority leader Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu has advocated for adequate salaries for Members of Parliament (MPs) to ensure that they play their oversight roles effectively and also make them more accountable to the citizenry.
He said that roles expected of the legislature in a parliamentary democracy like Ghana’s, are very justifiable but low remunerations are hampering their work because most MPs who are burdened with high expenditures, both in and without their constituencies, will have to look elsewhere to find extra incomes to support themselves at the expense of the work of parliament.
Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu made the suggestion when he commented on a report on the celebration of Global Legislative Openness Week, jointly presented to the house by the National Democratic Congress (NDC) MP for Ho West, Emmanuel Bedzrah, and the New Patriotic Party (NPP) Member for Juaben, Ama Pomaa Boateng.
He said MPs are doing their best even with their little salaries, adding that a parliament that should be open must necessarily also be accountable to the people.
The majority leader indicated that the high esteem the public holds parliament as an institution should be followed by better conditions of service.
“Mr. Speaker, a parliament that is accountable is one that……and before I state it, I should rather put it in capital letters. It is one that should provide adequate salaries to members of parliament to enable them to concentrate on the business of parliament. And yet every now and then citizens are at the throats of members of parliament,” he said.