Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin has recalled James Gyakye Quayson’s name into the records of Parliament as against court orders.
The Speaker expressed scepticism about the Court’s order’s precision and said that Parliament as a whole ought to reach a consensus on the issue.
This comes after the Supreme Court’s recent ruling that the victory of the Assin North MP was unconstitutional.
On May 17, the Supreme Court decided that Mr. Quayson’s name should be removed from the list of Members of Parliament.
However, in his remarks to the House on Thursday, Mr. Bagbin noted that “the order did not say the Speaker should expunge [Gyakye Qyayson].”
“It did not say any Member of Parliament or Clerk should expunge [the name], it says the institution called Parliament. So that institution must carry out the order. The only way the institution can carry out the order is for the institution to reason together. And that is only done in a sitting where the opportunity is given to members to think through it.”
In the judgement issued on May 17, Presiding Judge Justice Jones Dotse ruled that the Electoral Commission (EC) had broken the law by allowing Quayson to run in the 2020 parliamentary elections without presenting documentation proving he had renounced his Canadian citizenship.
The case was brought forward by Michael Ankomah Nimfah, a resident of the constituency.
Nimfah argued that Quayson, at the time of filing his nomination form in October 2020, was not eligible to contest as a member of Parliament for the Assin North Constituency.
Following the court’s ruling, the Clerk of Parliament wrote to the Electoral Commission (EC) declaring the Assin North seat vacant, leading to the scheduling of a by-election for June 27.
However, Speaker Alban Bagbin now supports the idea of retaining Quayson’s name in Parliament’s records.
He has taken this path because he does not “want to assume powers that are not clearly spelt out in any law.”
“So I did indicate and mentioned to some members of the Supreme Court that there is a need for clarification,” he explained.