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Opinions of Wednesday, 1 February 2017

Columnist: AFAG

Parliament must punish Mahama Ayariga for bribery fib

By AFAG

Our Constitution guarantees the freedom of speech to every Ghanaian. It is rich that both local and international laws guarantee the right of every individual to say what they feel and share their opinion on matters at any time.

The freedom of speech and expression as spelled out in Article 21(1) (a) of the the1992 constitution, as well as Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), is a fundamental human right that is to be enjoyed by all persons. However, an abuse of this freedom by one individual could threaten the very life of another individual. One of such persons abusing their right to freedom of speech and expression is the Member of Parliament for Bawku Central, Hon. Mahama Ayariga.

Alliance For Accountable Governance (AFAG) is gutted at the blatant lies and excessive use of propaganda by some supposed honorable members of Parliament. The habit of mudslinging and slandering of people with decent credibility by some Ghanaian politicians must be condemned unequivocally.

The claim of bribery by Hon. Mahama Ayariga against minister designate for Energy, Boakye Agyarko is very unfortunate. The allegation of receiving Gh3,000 from the minority Chief Whip, Hon. Muntaka Mubarak as money supposedly coming from Boakye Agyarko to entice the minority to approve his [Mr. Agyarko] nomination has turned out to have never happened.

Mahama Aya rigas claim was also negated by his superiors on the Appointments Committee of Parliament. AFAG is, however, of the view that the public denial of this event by the Chairman of the Committee Joe Osei-Owusu and the minority Chief Whip clearly showed that Mr. Ayariga cooked up this story to damage the reputation and integrity of Mr. Boakye Agyarko, Hon. Muntaka Mubarak, Hon. Joe Osei-Owusu and by extension, the Minority Leader, Hon. Haruna Iddrisu.

AFAG believes that for a member of the highest echelon of the Ghanaian society to throw out such baseless accusation without any concrete evidence is reckless and ill-fated. This drama of allegations and denials by the NDC members of parliament is a major indictment on the house of parliament.

AFAG holds the opinion that Parliament must not take this matter lightly since it is a stain on the entire house. This is a major indictment on every parliamentarian. It is only prudent that the leadership of the august house must immediately investigate this matter to the latter. We are also of the opinion that if Mr. Ayariga is found blameworthy, he must be punished by the house. It is the high time people with the title honorable start behaving honorably.

AFAG also support the move by the Chairman of the Committee to go to the court to prove his innocence and have his name cleared from this accusation. We also encourage Mr. Boakye Agyarko and Hon. Muntaka Mubarak to take a similar step to bring this matter to an end.