The Editor-In-Chief of the New Crusading Guide newspaper, Abdul Malik Kweku Baako Jnr has submitted that recent comments by the Speaker of Parliament to the effect that he can through Parliament remove the President should be taken as a joke.
According to the veteran journalist, Bagbin in truth does not have the capacity to remove a President from office because he is merely a conveyor belt for processes leading to the removal.
Speaking on Peace FM’s Kokrokoo show on Wednesday, November 24, 2021, Baako said: “The truth of the matter is that the Speaker cannot use Parliament to remove the President. He is a conveyor belt, mere conveyor belt when it comes to removal and impeachment processes of a president. I believe he was joking.”
He cited the standing of Bagbin as a seasoned lawyer and veteran lawmaker to drive home his point about the fact that he was joking when quizzed further by the host of the programme.
“Bagbin is a very good lawyer, a longstanding member of the bar…so you have to give him credit. I think he was joking to say ‘I through Parliament can trigger any impeachment proceedings…,’ that is why I think he was joking,” he added.
Bagbin’s comment was at a budget retreat last weekend in the Volta Region. It has since elicited critical reactions with the lastest being from John Boadu, General Secretary of the NPP who said Bagbin was ‘talking too much’ because of a post ‘he did not work for.’
What Bagbin said and Boadu’s clapback
Bagbin said of his power to remove Akufo-Addo: “Let me reemphasize that the 8th Parliament is properly positioned not to allow itself to be bullied into playing second fiddle to the executive.
“Parliament can remove His Excellency the President; His Excellency cannot do that to Parliament. As Speaker, His Excellency cannot remove me, but I can through Parliament get him [the president] removed.”
Boadu’s fightback was as follows: “The Speaker as we all know is only benefitting from what he didn’t work for and as a result, he has been passing comments that sometimes are strictly unnecessary.
“For instance, he passed a comment that he has the capacity to impeach or remove the president and the president cannot remove you (Alban Bagbin) is totally unnecessary because he forgets that as a Speaker, he doesn’t even have a vote.”
“So, on what basis is he saying that or he’s going to supervise a distorted proposal for impeachment or what? I think it’s time he recognises that he’s benefitting from something he didn’t work for.”
What the law says about presidential powers
Article 60(11) of the 1992 constitution reads: “Where the President and the Vice-President are both unable to perform the functions of the President, the Speaker of Parliament shall perform those functions until the President or the Vice-President is able to perform those functions or a new President assumes office, as the case may be.”
In the first term of the Akufo-Addo government, Speaker Mike Oquaye acted as President in the absence of Akufo-Addo and Bawumia, almost a year since the second term started, there hasn’t arisen the need for Bagbin to be handed presidential powers.
source: Ghana Web