Local Government Minister’s directive to Assemblies illegal – Minority

The Minority in Parliament has described as illegal and unconstitutional a directive by the Local Government Minister, Collins Dauda asking assemblies across the country to elect one person among them to preside over business.

The Minister in the directive indicated that “he has made amendments to order 10 of the assemblies’ standing orders”.

Under the standing orders, the Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs) are to elect by a simple majority a presiding officer in the event none of the contestants is able to secure the two thirds majority votes.

But addressing the media in Accra today, the Minority warned, the Ministers’ directive could have consequences for the decentralization policy and must not be allowed to stand.

The Minority’s ranking member on the Local Government committee, Akwasi Ameyaw Kyeremeh said “in our considered view, the minister is engaging himself in an unconstitutional and illegal venture by circumventing the constitutional requirement of two thirds of all the members of an assembly to elect a presiding member.

“The so-called amendment by the minister to the standing orders of the assemblies to have a member elected to preside over the assembly before the election of a substantive presiding member to approve the budget of the assembly seeks to undermine and subvert the letter and the spirit of Article 244 (2) of the 1992 Constitution of the Republic of Ghana”, he said.

Mr Kyeremeh said the purported amendment is therefore inconsistent with Article 244 (2) of the constitution which is the supreme law of the country hence “it must be deemed to be of no effect.

“It is our strong contention therefore that the minister’s directive cannot be allowed to stand”, he said.

The Minority called on the Minister to retract the directive, adding that any activity carried out by any assembly in pursuance of the directive must be deemed void and of no effect.

They called on assemblies to resist the illegality.

Mr Kyeremeh says the minority may seek redress in court if the directive is not reversed immediately.

Story by Ghana | Myjoyonline.com | Naa Sakwaba Akwa | [email protected]

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