Opinion

450 seater chamber: Misplaced priority and selfish

There is chaos in the country following the decision to build a 450 seater chamber for parliamentarians with $200M, an outrageous amount of money which has sparked outrage of the good people of Ghana.

Looking at the reactions from social media, about 90% of citizens of Ghana have expressed their disapproval
about the proposal to build at new chamber for parliamentarians.

While some see this as waste of resources, others also think this will make the ruling government unpopular.

In 2013, former president John Dramani Mahama promised parliamentarians a new chamber. John Dramani Mahama told Members of Parliament that his government was ready to construct a new chamber for the august house on the premises of the State House adding that feasibility studies for the project had already been scheduled for later that year, 2013.

The statement by the Former President is contained in pages 18 and 19 of the speech he delivered before the House in 2013.

The question is, are our leaders being selfish? There are so many pending projects at hand which have been halted because of lack of resources.

Some citizens have launched a campaign on social media harsh tag #DropthatChamber.

While some are protesting the building of the 450 sitter chamber, other MPS are busily justifying reason why the chamber is needed.

The Executive Director, African Centre for Parliamentary Affairs (ACEPA) has stated that building a new chamber for Parliament should not be a priority for Ghana.

Rasheed Draman believes that while there are many plaguing issues the country needs to address, a new Parliamentary building is not one of them.

On the other hand, Hon Majority leader Osei Kyei Mensah Bonsu has made some comments which has
caused some hullabaloo on social media.

He justified that, building of the new chamber will enable the speaker of parliament see his members
very well.

He further added that building of the chamber will make the speaker much safe in the parliament.

These comments have arouse anger among citizens of Ghana especially on social media.

The general Secretary of the National Patriotic Party, John Boadu in an interview at peace FM, has cautioned the government to halt the approval of the building of the chamber since majority of the citizens of Ghana are against it.

Is the government being selfish or misplaced priority? There are so many schools under trees which the government promised to remove, pupils sitting on the ground to learn, lack of social amenities especially in the rural areas.
Not forgetting damaged and untarred roads that needs to be fixed. Lack of street light even on high
ways. The Accra motorway have been experiencing blackout for years.

Streetlights mounted but not working. Increase of taxes and tariffs.

Can we say Ghana is in a position to build a 450 sitter chamber for parliamentarians who don’t even show up at parliament with $200m, when there are so many issues the government can solve with such an amount?

The question still holds; is the government confused or being selfish?

Gmail: belindaarthur91@gmail.com
Name: Belinda Amoako Arthur.

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