May 27, 2024


Speaker of Parliament  Alban Sumana Kingsford Bagbin has explained that the failure of some Members of Parliament (MPs) to engage their constituents on issues as regularly as expected of them is due to financial difficulties; and a lack of dedicated funding for such engagements.

He stressed that once MPs are expected to engage their constituents regularly, there must be financial provision to enable them to carry out their mandate as elected representatives of the people.

 The Speaker made these remarks at a Press Soiree in Ho last Thursday[ 14 December 2023] as part of activities marking the 30th-anniversary commemoration of an uninterrupted parliamentary democracy under the theme, “Thirty Years of Parliamentary Democracy under the Fourth Republic: The Journey Thus Far”.

“When MPs are elected for a term of four years, nobody gives them money to go to their constituencies. Everything is left to the MP alone to do, including other burdens which hamper their effective engagement with their constituents. If the Member of Parliament is doing the business of the people and has to take the total cost of doing the business, then that service to the people cannot be for free,” he said in response to a question on the issue of MPs engaging their constituents.

 He called on the Government to make adequate funding for MPs to be able to engage their constituents as expected.

MPs, as elected representatives of their people, are mandated to consult their people on all issues affecting them so that they can articulate their views and concerns in Parliament. Unfortunately, there are concerns that most MPs are unable to be in their Constituencies regularly to engage their constituents on both local and national issues. For the Speaker of Parliament, who has been an MP for 28 years, MPs simply are unable to engage due to financial constraints.



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