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Speaker of Parliament Suggests Scrapping Ex-gratia, Says System Outdated

Bagbin says ex-gratia payments have failed to combat corruption as it had been intended to

Ghana’s Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin says the ex-gratia system, where public servants like ministers and other Article 71 holders, (including the Speaker’s Office) are paid benefits when they retire, should be scrapped.

Speaking at a forum in Kumasi to mark the 30th anniversary of the Fourth Republican Parliament, he acknowledged although these payments were initially intended to combat corruption among certain public servants and political officeholders, that has not been the case.

“The idea was to assure them to think about the people they represent because, after office, they would be taken care of. So it was to help contain corruption. Unfortunately, in practice, it has not served its purpose,” he said.

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He further advocated for amending Article 71 of the Constitution – a call that’s been supported by many, including former president John Mahama who is seeking re-election at the upcoming December general elections. Mahama has already promised to abolish ex-gratia payments, although that pledge was not espoused when he was president.

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“I fully support anyone who argues that we should abolish Article 71. It hasn’t served its purpose, and there is no use in maintaining it,” the Speaker said.

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