General News of Monday, 25 September 2017
Brong Ahafo Regional Youth Organiser of the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP), Kwame Baffoe, popularly referred to as Abronye DC, has said he will petition the Speaker of Parliament to declare the Kpone Katamanso seat vacant following the installation of the Member of Parliament (MP) for the area, Nii Laryea Afotey Agbo, as regent of Katamanso.
Abronye DC, speaking with Class News, said the MP is keeping both positions in breach of Article 276 of the 1992 constitution, which states that “a chief shall not take part in active politics, and any chief wishing to do so must or shall abdicate his stool or skin”.
Nii Laryea Afotey Agbo was in June 2017, installed as the caretaker Chief of Katamanso in the Greater Accra Region following the incapacitation of his father, Nii Otu Akwate IX, who is the substantive Chief of Katamanso.
Abronye DC insists the MP is in contravention of the constitution if he does not resign from Parliament.
Abronye DC said: “I’m told Parliament is resuming next week so I will officially file a petition to the Speaker of Parliament to address the issue because currently, I’m aware that the honourable Member of Parliament for Kpone Katamanso has been installed as an acting chief of the area. And if you read section 58 of the Chieftaincy Act, Act 2008 as amended, clearly talks about the categories of chiefs we have in this country and the last paragraph talks about other chiefs that may be recognised by the National House of Chiefs.
“If you are acting chief in a certain traditional area, it means that you can be recognised by the National House of Chiefs and that acting chief also performs his or her customary duties as the law demands. So clearly, he cannot continue to hold himself as a Member of Parliament. If he continues to hold himself as a Member of Parliament, it is a clear violation of the 1992 constitution and I’m appealing to the Speaker of Parliament to call on the MP for Kpone Katamanso to abdicate his seat to pave way for a by election to be held.”
But in a swift response, the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) said the MP has not breached the constitution.
The Greater Accra Regional Organiser of the NDC, Anthony Nukpenu, told Class News petitioning the Speaker to have Nii Laryea Afotey Agbo abdicate his seat will be a “waste of time”.
“Petitioning the speaker will be a waste of time because before the MP assumed the role, he consulted with the leadership of the House, both Majority and Minority, he sought advice as to what he was supposed to do,” he stated.