The new Member of Parliament (MP) for Afigya-Kwabre North, Collins Adomako-Mensah, says consensus building will be crucial in the Eighth Parliament to ensure smooth running of the House.
According to him, although Parliament was turbulent on the first day, subsequent interactions among MPs portend good things to come.
“I am looking forward to a very eventful Eighth Parliament. The Speaker, on his first day, made a very positive statement; he made it clear that he was going to be a very firm leader. He wasn’t going to be partisan, which is very important for us,” Mr. Adomako-Mensah told the DAILY GUIDE.
“As you know we have a close Parliament and so consensus building must be key in this Parliament. I am hoping that most of the things that we do here will be driven by the national interest at heart,” he stressed.
For him, since Parliament is a House of rules and procedures, he intends to get conversant with all the rules and procedures, adding that “we received copies of the Standing Orders and we have been reading through.”
“We are yet to have the practical experience of all those rules and we experienced one during the swearing in—the fact that someone has to nominate a Speaker and someone has to second the nomination,” the MP recalled.
“Your lack of rules and procedures will set you back,” he submitted.
The MP said he had decided to serve the country and his constituents in truth and honesty; and indicated that nothing would change his character and conviction, while deflating assertions that MPs who become Ministers tend to be proud.
“The President is yet to announce his batch of ministers and if my name is mentioned I will thank God. I am here to serve. But in a case that I don’t get mentioned, my first duty is to Parliament and my constituents.
“In Parliament, I am looking forward to serving on interesting committees which I have notified the leadership of my side. I have a finance background and I have indicated to leadership that I will love to be on the Finance Committee, if possible, and the Trade and Industry Committee,” he disclosed.
“Energy is an area I want to study and I wish I get an opportunity on that particular committee. The first thing to do is to do my best. If you don’t get an opportunity to speak on the Floor you should be able to articulate yourself at the committee level, which is what I intend to do,” he added.
“In terms of my constituents, I always tell them that I intend to give them leadership; leadership is a very powerful word. And I intend to serve them with dignity and honesty,” he stressed and added that “and if there are things I feel I cannot do I should be honest to tell them that this time round let’s keep to next year.”
“So I am promising them with honest leadership, vocal leadership. Hitherto my constituency has been under the radar. My focus is to bring the constituency up and ensure that Afigya-Kwabre North is back on the political map once again,” he noted and continued that “I have indicated to them that education is one of the key things that I feel we are going to focus on.
“Approximately 60,000 people and almost 65 to 70 per cent of the population are between the ages of 15 and 45. So it is a very youthful constituency and I have indicated to them that we should focus on education and skills development.
“I intend to sponsor a person each year from one community to any tertiary institution and subsequently we will try and build the capacity of our youth so that they could on their own be employable.”
By Ernest Kofi Adu, Parliament House