- A deputy speaker presiding over Parliament can vote on matters and be counted as part of a quorum in decision-making, says the Supreme Court
- The judges voted unanimously that a deputy speaker who assumes the temporary role as Speaker of Parliament does not lose his right to take part in decisions
- The judges ruled that the passing of the budget on November 30 in which Joe Wise counted himself as part of the quorum was valid
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Ghana’s Supreme Court has ruled that a deputy speaker – while presiding over proceedings in Parliament – has the right to vote on matters and be counted as part of the quorum for decision-making in the House.
A seven-member Supreme Court bench ruled unanimously that upon a true and proper interpretation of Article 103 and 104 of the 1992 Constitution, a deputy speaker who assumes the temporary role as Speaker of Parliament does not lose his right to take part in decisions.
State-owned Daily Graphic reports Wednesday, March 9, 2022, that in view of the decision, the apex court held that the passing of the budget on November 30, 2021, in which Mr Joe Osei Owusu (Joe Wise), the First Deputy Speaker, counted himself as part of the quorum, was valid.
The report said the apex court also struck down order 109 (3) of the standing orders of Parliament which prevented a deputy speaker presiding from voting, as unconstitutional.
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“The court gave the decision today after it dismissed a writ by a law lecturer, Justice Abdulai, who was challenging the decision of Mr Owusu to be counted as part of the quorum to pass the budget.
“The unanimous decision was given by Justices Jones Dotse, Nene Amegather, Prof Ashie Kotey, Mariama Owusu, Lovelace Johnson, Clemence Honyenuga and Yonny Kulendi," Daily Graphic reports.
The court did not give its reasons for the decision but said the reasons would be filed by Friday, March 11, 2022, at the Court’s registry, the report said.
It was the case of Justice Abdulai, the plaintiff, that the 1992 Constitution prevents a person presiding over proceedings in Parliament to have an original or casting vote or to be part of a quorum.
Ghana’s Attorney-General, Godfred Dame, disagreed with this position.
He argued in court that the quorum in Parliament formed under Article 102 is different from the quorum formed under Article 104 of the 1992 Constitution.
Mr Dame argued further that the quorum under Article 102 is for the conduct of business in Parliament, and that is why Article 102 provides that it should be one-third of members.
Under Fire NDC MP For Assin North Duly Informed to Stop Holding Himself As Lawmaker – Supreme Court Rules
The apex court of Ghana, the Supreme Court, has ruled that a substituted service it ordered on opposition NDC MP for Assin North, James Gyakye Quayson, had been effectively executed.
According to the Supreme Court, the embattled MP has been appropriately served with a court process seeking to stop him from holding himself as a legislator.
Daily Graphic reported that a seven-member panel of judges presided over by Justice Jones Dotse, ruled on Tuesday, March 8, 2022, that the matter has been duly brought to the notice of the MP.
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