Mr Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, Majority Leader and Minister for Parliament Affairs has advocated trust and consensus building in Parliament in order to enhance the country’s democracy.
According to him, a lot more needs to be done to protect Ghana’s current democratic system in order to give dignity to the people.
“What is true but less obvious is that democracy itself is an inherently fragile system and conscious effort must be made to nurture it to grow.
That is why it is important to come together to protect our democracy in order to give dignity to our people,” the Minister said.
Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu made the observation during the Ministry’s engagement with the Core Leadership of Parliament at Parliament House in Accra.
The theme for the meeting: “Building Consensus and Trust in Parliament to enhance both Procedural and Substantive Democracy”
The working dialogue was to afford the Minister the opportunity to interact with Leadership of Parliament on issues that are germane to the democratic development of the country.
Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu also urged Members of Parliament (MPs) not to allow their individual and partisan interests to supersede the public good, as that may spell doom for the nation.
He insisted that it was important to build consensus to enable the people to establish a common understanding and framework for identifying common solutions that would work for the varied interests that exist in the society.
“If we allow our individual and partisan interests to supersede the public good, it may spell doom for our dear nation and we cannot absolve ourselves from responsibility if the nation falters,” he said.
Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu noted also that as MPs building trust among themselves, consensus building was central in every sphere of their parliamentary practice, since that would determine the success or otherwise of their relationships.
He said without purposeful and consistent efforts to foster trust and build strong relationships among parliamentarians, Parliament may fail to deliver on its mandate.
The Majority Leader stated that Parliament must work hard to deal with the rather continued polarization of country’s politics, which often robs nation of the opportunity to assess policy initiatives and actions of political actors from a purely professional standpoint.
“In the current circumstances, consensus-building, collaboration, bipartisanship must prevail at all times to enhance the development of the country,” the Majority Leader stressed.
Minority Leader Haruna Iddrisu stressed the need for the Ghanaian Legislature to be positioned in a way to enable the public to benefit from the democratic dividend.
He was of the view that there was growing mistrust among the populace on the weight and strength of Parliament, and noted that the citizens were not feeling the impact of democratic reward.
Dr Rasheed Draman, Executive Director, African Centre for Parliamentary Democracy said much work ought to be done to regain public trust in Parliament.
He said to ensure Parliament’s own self- preservation, there was the need for both the Majority and Minority Sides to find ways to work together in the interest of the country, adding that citizens were not going to anything less than that.
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