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John Mahama criticizes President Akufo-Addo’s Secretary for disrespectful letter to Parliament on Anti-Gay Bill

The Flagbearer of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), John Mahama, has criticized Nana Bediatuo Asante, Secretary to President Akufo-Addo, for a letter written to Parliament, regarding the proposed Proper Human Sexual Rights and Ghanaian Values bill, also known as the anti-gay bill.

According to the former President, the letter displays a high level of disrespect towards Parliament, as well as towards the Clerk and the institution itself.

The contentious letter, which was penned by Asante on behalf of President Nana Akufo-Addo dated March 18, 2024, urged Parliament to withhold sending the anti-LGBTQ+ bill to President Akufo-Addo for assent.

According to Nana Bediatuo Asante, the decision is being made in consideration of the fact that two applications for an order of interlocutory injunction are currently pending before the Supreme Court.

In response, Mr Mahama, lamented over his disapproval, deeming the tone and content of the letter offensive and disrespectful to the democratic process.

He noted that the Secretary’s actions undermine the foundations of Parliamentary democracy and neglect the role of the Clerk of Parliament, who acts as the official mediator between the executive and legislative branches, saying his behaviour was a negative precedent that compromises the stature and integrity of Parliament as a whole.

Former President Mahama, expressed concern over the issuance of the letter, stating that the President’s Secretary, does not possess the authority to do so and stressed that Parliament, as an independent institution, holds the constitutional mandate to assemble bills for the President’s consideration and approval.

He argued that the authority to introduce bills, lies solely with Parliament, as outlined in the Constitution and emphasized that the role of Parliament is to craft bills, which are then presented to the President to be enacted into law.

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