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It’s Time To De-Emphasise Extreme, Blinded Partisanship – Okudzeto Ablakwa Cries Out

Member of Parliament for North Tongu, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa has bemoaned the sickening nature of politics in the country where politicians, irrespective of the issue or problem at hand, support and justify the actions and policies of their own.

Speaking on JoyNews’ news analysis programme Newsfile on Saturday, September 14, the North Tongu MP charged his fellow legislators (both the majority and minority) in Parliament to eschew partisan politics as it is having adverse effect on the economy.

“Because of the nature of our politics, unfortunately, it is extremely partisan, but I think that after 25 years of this 4th Republican democracy it is time to deemphasize the extreme partisanship and sometimes blinded partisanship”.

Decrying the nature of our politics and comparing it to the United Kingdom, the legislator averred that Members of Parliament, in order to look good in the eyes of the President, tend to side with everything he does or says, unlike the UK where members of the Conservative Party vote against their own Prime Minister because they have the interest of the nation at heart.

“Elsewhere you have Congress Committee, House of Commons Committee who work in tandem when it comes to the national interest and you’ll see it even in the ongoing Brexit debate. You see the rebellion within the Conservative Party and then you see that Conservative Members of the Parliament will be voting against either British Prime Minister May or British Prime Minister Boris Johnson because they’re looking at the national interest, what really is essential to their constituents”.

“But here it does appear that because of the governance architecture where the president is so powerful and overbearing and the parliamentary arm of the ruling party; members of parliament always want to catch the eye of the president. They don’t want to step on toes, they don’t want to be in the bad books of the president so there is this extreme partisanship”, he lamented.

Okudzeto Ablakwa’s comments come in the wake of abandoned hospital projects started in the erstwhile Mahama administration have been left to rot by the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP).

Minority members on the Health Committee of Parliament led by the Ranking Leader, Kwabena Minta Akando, toured abandoned health facilities across the country. They, after the tour, blamed government for not giving the health sector the necessary attention it deserved.

According to them, government’s decision to neglect the projects amounts to sheer wickedness and must be condemned.

Reacting to the issue, Health Minister, Kwaku Agyemang Manu said the Minority’s tour to the facilities is borne out of pure mischief and quizzed why they will play politics with the health sector.

But Okudzeto Ablakwa, speaking on Newsfile, justified the Minority’s action,

“I must say that what the Minority has done is commendable, it’s dynamic, you have seen such solo effort elsewhere as well...So Members of Parliament take up such causes all over the world”.