Speaker Suspends Parliament sitting for 3-weeks over COVID-19 Surge


Speaker of Parliament, Rt Hon Alban Sumana Bagbin has suspended sitting till March 2,2021 as part of interim measures to minimise and control the wide spread of the Coronavirus pandemic.

The decision followed a surge in the positive cases recorded in parliament within three weeks of testing of MPs and staff of parliament.

So far, 17 Members of Parliament and 151 staff members have been confirmed positive and are either in isolation or at treatments centres.

The Speaker tool the decision on Tuesday, February 9,2021, after consuming leadership of the House.

He said report received from medical officers within parliament indicated that about 17 Members of Parliament and over 151 staff have tested positive for the virus.

According to him, this decision would help parliament disinfect the House as part of fight against the virus.

The Speaker however gave March 2, upon which the House would resume fully to transact businesses.

Speaker of Parliament

Hon Bagbin however directed that for the purpose ensuring government business does not come to a halt, the Appointment Committee could sit with the observance of the COVID-19 to vet ministerial nominees.

The Appointmnt Committee are expected to start sitting on Wednesday, February 10,2021.

Full Communication by Speaker to parliament

As Hon. Members would recall, at the last adjourned date on 5th February,
2021, the House, pursuant to the adoption of the Business Statement,
decided that Parliament sits on Tuesdays and Thursdays until otherwise
The House further decided that not more than one-third of Hon. Members
would attend Sittings of the House in the Chamber at any given time.
These decisions were in furtherance of the directive of His Excellency the
President in his update (Update No. 23) on the COVID-19 situation on 31st
January, 2021, announcing new measures to contain the pandemic.
Hon. Members, having regard to the upsurge of the coronavirus infection in the House viz 17 MPs and 151 staff and ancillary workers in the precincts of Parliament, and the fact that the Appointments Committee is yet to commence consideration of His Excellency the President’s ministerial nominees, I have, in consultation with Leadership, decided that Sitting of the House be adjourned for three (3) weeks.
It is hoped that within this period of adjournment, the Appointments
Committee would commence consideration and public hearing of the President’s nominees for Ministerial appointments. By the end of the three weeks, the Appointments Committee would have submitted reports on the referral for the consideration of the House.
Accordingly, with the exception of Hon. Members of the Appointments
Committee, the Clerk to the Committee and other supporting staff who will be engaged in the task of considering the President’s nominees for ministerial appointments, the House will take a break as from tomorrow, Wednesday, 10 February 2021 to Tuesday, 2 March, 2021.

During that period, Hon Members are to comply with the strict COVID -19 protocols and regulations.

Members and staff should re-submit
themselves to the Parliament Medical Centre for re-testing after two weeks from tomorrow to ascertain their status before the resumption of the House.

Meanwhile Parliament will continue with the weekly disinfection and sanitization of the premises and precincts of Parliament.
The House is accordingly adjourned till Tuesday, 2nd March, 2021 at 14
hours in the afternoon.
I thank you for the att.ti…

Source: expressnewaghana.com

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