A Dithyramb: Eighth Parliament of the Fourth Republic portends callowness of the vulnerable

Joseph Osei-Owusu, First Deputy Speaker

January 7, I wrung all bitterness out of me just to save my pen and paper from tormenting my mind about the one question I’m yet to find an answer to, hoping that the year will end without any problems being proballein (thrown forward) into 2022.

Bob Marley in his song; Survival, has envisioned my plight by saying “He who fights and run away lives to fight another day”. And truly, “I can’t run away from myself” anymore.

Even when Jonah took to flight from his last recorded assignment, he miraculously was spurted on the shores of Nineveh. My stomach crumbles and rumbles. My head aches. My body is obliterated. A head once up; now lowered in shame.

Vividly, has the Bible captured what we professed to be good for our democracy and a beacon of hope in Hebrew 6:7-8 and it reads:

“For the earth which drinks in the rain that often comes upon it, and bears herbs useful for those by whom it is cultivated, receives blessing from God

But if it bears thorns and briers , it is rejected and near to being cursed, whose end is to be burned.”

Our democracy is turning out to become the rain that had once watered our lands and bore useful herbs to one that is now growing thorns and briers that pricks at any attempt to embrace it.

We must not shy away from the truth. The very elected lawmakers have descended into an abysmal abyss of the scenes that accompanies general elections in our land which they have continuously shifted from, laying the blame at the door steps of the vulnerable that they have vulnerably exploited.

Had it not been for technology, the dusky hours of January 7 would have been shrouded in secrecy when an elected and sworn in member of parliament had unprovokingly intercepted ballots papers that were been counted in an attempt to save and win the Speakership for his party.

What of the event of December 20, which has worsen my predicament, the party faithfuls will be asking me?

December 20 has its own fair share. A Speaker of Parliament who is bent on seeing through his government’s agenda, cunningly, technically and obnoxiously or hysterically crafted a dilemmatic clouded way out of their Standing Orders to get himself counted in support of a partially accepted bill.

This attempt, knowing very well will meet vehement rejection by the minority who only later became hell bound to reject the bill in its entirety after initially calling for some reduction.

So they sing the heralded music of check and balances on the executive and protection of the poor masses knowing very well that, they may have only resorted to their current stands after a possible meeting with the party’s hierarchy.

The issue is densely compounded when “The Speaker” clothed in the wisdom of Dumbledore ‘vanishes in the hope that there will be stalemate to the benefit of his beloved party’, only to be ostentatiously swirled by the magic wands of Harry Porter in the “First Deputy Speaker” and the unflinching support of Rubeus Hagrid in the “Second Deputy” to ‘conquer’ the evil infections of returning to IMF in return for the provision of roads, health and educational facilities

If I were to be in a shrine, the call would have been; ‘Beloveds’ but on this platform, I will shark up in President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo’s regalia of peaceful mantra and say, Fellow Ghanaians, may we ask ourselves these questions?

Are we Ghanaians who go to the polls to elect our parliamentarians based on policies or we are Ghanaians who go to the polls in party colours?

Are we responsible for electing our representatives to the house of legislature for their party to now dictate to us regardless of the needs of the people they represent?

Why is it impossibly difficult to have at least a section from the minority side who thinks the ‘bill of contention’ to the full approval or adoption of the 2022 budget statement is worthy and also why no member from the majority side thinks this ultimate saviour in the form of tax will regressively affect more ordinary people?

Have our parliamentarians sworn allegiance to a bigger force after we’ve queued up and voted for them, a reason they publicly display their inability to be discerning when it comes to making decisions that affect the majority of people?

To both sides, are their lives or families’ lives seriously under threat should they publicly denounce their support for a decision the hierarchy of the party secretly compels on them?

Going back to my Jonah story, I won’t pretentiously deny that the people who fear a soon uprising have been called to order and cautioned appropriately. I can only say, more silence will empower the ‘ghost’ oppressor. We must revisit our laws and struck out the clauses that leadership has intoxicated itself with.

If only our cherished systems are not about to be cursed, maybe, the international rankings for our democracy and development which is portrayed as bouyant is in the actual sense papery, since these actions exhibited by parliamentarians in the Eighth Parliament of the Fourth Republic are reverting to the medieval ages.


Appreciation to Wordsmith Anani for the input

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