Chairman of the National Media Commission (NMC), Yaw Boadu-Ayeboafo has raised concerns over the membership of political leaders on the Parliamentary Service Board.
He contends that the existence of the chairman of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), Johnson Asiedu Nketiah on Parliament’s advisory board compromises the objectivity and neutrality that the House is supposed to maintain.
Speaking at a dialogue with the core leadership of Parliament which was organised by the Ministry for Parliamentary Affairs, Mr. Boadu-Ayeboafo noted that it is not right for Mr. Asiedu Nketiah to be on the advisory board to the Speaker of Parliament.
“There was this concern that, now that Mr. Aseidu Nketiah is the Chairman of the NDC he should not be part of the advisory group to the Speaker and serve on the Board. He disagreed. It is a democratic process, but sometimes we need to look beyond now into the future. How can someone leading a political party advise the Speaker? How can he demonstrate objectivity and neutrality in the highest sense?” he questioned.
Johnson Asiedu Nketiah was named as part of four persons to constitute the new Parliamentary Service Board in March 2021, by the Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin.
Mr. Bagbin announced the names following a report he received from a special advisory committee set up for that purpose.
But his inclusion on the Board raised concerns given his role as then General Secretary of the NDC. The Speaker and Mr. Nketiah himself justified the membership because he [Mr. Nketiah] met the necessary requirements.
The Parliamentary Service is governed by the Parliamentary Service Board, which is composed of the Speaker, as chairman; four other members appointed by the Speaker, acting in accordance with the advice of a Committee of Parliament; and the Clerk of Parliament.
The Board has the responsibility of promoting the welfare of Members of Parliament and Staff of the Service.
It also has general control of the management of the Service in matters of policy.
The Speaker has ultimate responsibility for the Service.
With the prior approval of Parliament, the Board makes regulations prescribing the terms and conditions of service of officers and other employees for the effective and efficient administration of the Service.