By Patrick Biddah
Majority Leader in Parliament, Osei Kyei Mensah Bonsu on Tuesday, stirred controversy in the Legislative House, when he accused his colleagues of doing “galamsey“.
Galamsey is a coined word which is widely used in the mining industry for those involved in the illegal practice.
But according to the Leader of the House, who explained himself after his comment sparked controversy stressed that Members Of Parliament (MPs) who spend hours outside the House attending to personal businesses, rather than being in the House to attend to Parliamentary business, are involved in what he means by “galamsey “.
Mr. Bonsu, who was making a remark at the resumption of Parliament for the First Sitting Of The Second Meeting, clarified his submission by saying he was referring to MPs, who like to do personal businesses other than being in the House to do Parliamentary business.
The practice of galamsey, has been a nerve wrecking fight with the government putting together a joint Military and Police taskforce to end the canker which has destroyed waterbodies.
The mention of MPs involved in galamsey, therefore raised eyebrows until the Majority Leader, who is also the New Patriotic Party (NPP)Member of Parliament (MP) for Suame stressed that he was not referring to the practice of illegal small scale mining which is well known as “galamsey “.
The Majority Leader who delved into other matters of concern for the House also cautioned colleagues from desisting from the practice of leaking what he said are information meant for the Legislative House but ends up in the media for discussion before Parliament begins to discuss it.
His concern was first brought to the attention of the House by the Speaker ,Rt Hon Mike Oquaye, who in his opening remarks, highlighted the concern of finding information meant for the House in media spaces.
That notwithstanding, the Minority after close of yesterday’s sitting went to the media to raise issues with the government over a number of agreement that has been presented for consideration .
The Minority Spokesperson on Finance, Casel Ato Forson, told Journalists that the Minority would in the coming days investigate the full details surrounding the Agreement between Ghana and four other countries with respect to The Avoidance of Double Taxation Agreement which have been presented to the House for consideration.
These countries that the Ghanaian government has brought agreement to Parliament to approve are Czech Republic, the Kingdom of Morocco , Mauritius and Singapore.
In the words of Mr Forson, who is the National Democratic Congress (NDC) MP for Ajumako /Enyan/Essiam, the Minority will oppose any deal that is not in the interest of the country and will humbly support same if investigation shows that Ghana stands to benefit.