Private Legal Practitioner, Justice Abdulai has argued that Deputy Speakers of Parliament are not ordinary members of Parliament and thus must be treated accordingly.
His argument is in line with his application for review at the Supreme Court concerning the apex court’s earlier ruling that Deputy Speakers can vote while presiding.
The Court had argued that the Deputy Speakers were representing constituents, thus denying them the right to vote was akin to disenfranchising their constituents.
However, according to Justice Abdulai new resources he has come across establish the fact that the office of the Deputy Speakers is merely an extension of the Speaker’s thus they are one and the same.
This implies that whatever rule applies to the Speaker must likewise apply to a presiding Deputy Speaker in equal measure.
Speaking on JoyNews’ PM Express, he said “The moment you become a Deputy Speaker of Parliament, you’re no longer an ordinary member of Parliament. And the constitution says it so clear under Article 297(h) it provides so clear that ‘while directing or empowering a public officer to do an act or thing otherwise applying to him by the designation of his office include his successors in office and all his deputies and assistants.’
“Now the implication of this is that when referring to a public officer, his deputies or any person acting in that office are one and the same, so in other words, they have the same authority, they have the same powers, they have the same literally everything.
“And it gets worse when you move on to Article 295(2), it deepens this position that I have just read out in Article 297 when it says that ‘a reference to the holder of an office by the term designating his office shall unless the context otherwise require be construed as including a reference to the person for the time being lawfully acting or performing the functions of that office.’
“Now the combination of these two provisions makes the office of the Speaker and his deputies, as far as the constitution is concerned, one and the same this is why as I indicated earlier that person is unable to occupy any ministerial position.”
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