Parliamentary Seats Must Be Reduced To Only 200 – Afenyo Markin Insists
The number of members of parliament has increased from 200 in 1992 to 275 as of now.
Alexander Afenyo-Markin, the Deputy Majority Leader, has voiced his displeasure with the exploding size of parliament since the 1992 constitution came into effect.
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He has suggested that the 275 seats in the House of Representatives be reduced to 200.
According to Afenyo-Markin, his idea will reduce the strain on the public purse. Speaking on Wednesday, March 15, 2023 at the GIMPA Law Conference 3, he said
“I must say that one critical thing to look at is to put an upper limit on the number of MPs that we must elect each year. It is unpalatable that a small country like Ghana with its many financial problems has 275 MPs. In contrast with all its financial muscle, Australia has 151 and 76 senators. We need a change in the law to stop the unnecessary expansion in the number of seats in our Parliament.”
According to him, Ghana needs an Upper chamber which will be known as the House of Elders adding that the Council of State be converted to serve this purpose.
“I hold the view that Ghana needs an upper chamber, it should be known as the House of Elders whose election shall remain non-partisan and whose primary role shall be to moderate the current parliamentary excesses and extreme partisanship.
Thus the Council of State should be converted into the Upper Chamber of Parliament…I am not suggesting that the current Council of State is not helpful,” he explained.
The chronic absenteeism and unsatisfactory performance of MPs have compelled Ghanaians to question the rationale for having as many as 275 MPs.
Earlier, the Majority Leader Osei Kyei Mensah-Bonsu complained about the size of Parliament. He said the number is too huge.
He was joined by North Tongu lawmaker Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa who wants a cap of 200 parliamentarians.
But NDC MP for Yapei Kusawgu Constituency, Northern Region, John Jinapor wants the constitutional provision on the creation of new constituencies reviewed.
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