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Parliament Under my Leadership Will Resist Any Affront to Ghana’s Democracy – Speaker Bagbin

Ghana’s Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin, has said he would resist any affront to Ghana’s democracy in a statement on Thursday.

“We will not allow a government to undermine the sovereign will of the people expressed through their representatives. Particularly that the values of our people are concerned, we have lost so much of them to colonialism and slave trade that this generation has a divine mandate to protect the remnants of our cultural values and even restore the lost ones,” Bagbin said in a statement on Facebook, cementing his refusal to approve the President’s new ministers.

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The Speaker’s comments follow the current impasses between the Presidency and Legislators from the opposition over President Akufo-Addo’s delay in signing the anti-LGBTQ bill passed by Parliament last month.

On Tuesday, the Executive Secretary to the President, Nana Asante Bediatuo, wrote to Parliament asking it to “cease and desist” from submitting the bill for signing until the Supreme Court resolves lawsuits challenging its constitutionality.

But the Speaker of Parliament and Minority MPs appear piqued by those actions, calling it “contemptuous” and a threat to Ghana’s democracy. And so on Wednesday, Speaker Bagbin said Parliament would halt approving new ministers until the Supreme Court concludes the lawsuits.

“In light of this process, the House is unable to continue to consider the nominations of His Excellency the President in the ‘spirit of upholding the rule of law’ until after the determination of the application for interlocutory injunction by the Supreme Court,” Bagbin said in Parliament on Wednesday.

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Since the anti-gay Bill was passed, President Akufo-Addo has been facing pressure from conservative groups and sponsors of the legislation to sign it into law. But it appears the situation presents a real test to Nana Akufo-Addo, who before becoming President had steered his work as a lawyer, on the promotion of civil and human rights.

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