A book that highlights the activities of Ghana’s Parliament and provides practical details about how parliamentarians carry out their constitutional mandate has been launched in Accra.
Titled “How Parliament works in Ghana”, the 117-page book empowers the reader to understand parliamentary practices and procedures in Ghana. It also gives the history of Ghana’s Parliament.
The book was authored by the Acting Head of Department of the Governance Studies Department of the Evangelical Presbyterian University College (EPUC), Mr Harrison Kofi Belley.
It was launched by a hospitality management consultant, Mr Emmanuel Kwasi Mantey
Reviewing the six-chapter book, the author said the first chapter “looks at the evolution and overview of the Parliament of Ghana which include sections on the transition to the fourth republic and overview of the fourth republican Parliament.
“The second chapter talks about the leadership structure in Parliament and explain the functionaries of Parliament such as the Speaker, the Deputy Speakers, the Majority and Minority leaders, Chief Whips and the Clerk to Parliament,” Mr Belley said.
The third chapter of the book, he said, dealt with the business of Parliament which included the standing orders, calendar of Parliament, sessions, meeting and sittings, Parliament practices.
“The fourth chapter describes the functions of Parliament which discusses about law making, representation, oversight and budget process,” Mr Belley said.
On the fifth chapter, he said the book provided information on the parliamentary service in the fourth republic of Ghana, which looked at the five divisions of the service.
“The last chapter presents some lessons, observations and conclusion,” Mr Belley added.
According to him, the book “is a combination of interrogation of several sources and my own analysis and reflection on how Parliament works in Ghana”.
Delivering the keynote address, the Member of Parliament (MP) for Ho West in the Volta Region, Mr Emmanuel Kwasi Bedzrah, called for the establishment of district or constituency Youth Parliament in the 16 regions of Ghana.
That, he said, would enable the youth and the ordinary citizen to understand the operations of Parliament and the functions of parliamentarians.
Mr Bedzrah, who is also a ranking member for the Works and Housing Committee, said there had been numerous of occasions and instances where parliamentarians had been blamed for development challenges that were not part of their functions.
He stated that many MPs had been blamed by their constituencies for development challenges such as bad roads when in reality MPs “are not responsible for road constructions”.
“Once we have a District Youth Parliament, the people can be sensitised to understand what is within the jurisdiction of MPs and what is not within their purview,” Mr Bedzrah said.