It was a moment of inspiration, fun and merrymaking when Member of Parliament (MP) for the Klottey Korle constituency, Dr Zanetor Agyeman-Rawlings met with some aged people in her constituency.
Over 500 aged constituents consisting of both males and females from Tudu, Okaikoi, North Adabraka, Asylum Down and its environs were treated to various forms of donations.
The wide smiles on their faces could not be compared to the dance moves they displayed in appreciation of the food items they received from their MP.
Despite the weary bodies and weak legs, the Osu Palace premise was at the mercy of the beneficiaries who challenged Dr Zanetor to a dance session.
As the rhythm of the party’s anthem and old-fashioned songs dominated the airwaves, the oldies rushed to the dancefloor to depict how they used to boogie during their youthful days.
Impressed by their dance moves, an obviously excited Dr Zanetor thanked the aged, whom she described as her “extra parents’ following the demise of her father, for giving her a warm reception.
She eulogized them for their pivotal role in uplifting her image and that of the National Democratic Congress as a party, for which she pledged to be of more help.
This was after she had gifted them food items to ensure they continued the merrymaking even after the yuletide.
At the annual MP’s Time with the Aged ceremony hosted at the forecourt of the Osu Palace, Friday, January 14, she explained that the donation is not geared towards scoring political points.
Rather, the MP said it is in fulfillment of a pledge she made to her late father, Jerry John Rawlings, to not forsake the vulnerable but reward them with everything deserving.
“While going on a tour in my constituency, I was given a very warm reception. They made me feel like family. I remembered my father’s advice to always remember the aged and treat them with great respect.”
“This is not because of politics but it is what is right. The commandment reminds us to honour our parents so this gathering is to honour them and ease their burdens.”
The COVID-19 pandemic has posed a great financial difficulty to the aged and this, Dr Zanetor said she cannot solve, but her donation to them is a gesture of her thoughtfulness, adding that “I wish I could do more because you are the pillars of the community”.
Despite constituting a meager minority of voters per the latest statistics, Dr Zanetor noted that the aged hold the key to re-instilling dignity to politics.
She, therefore, admonished them to teach the history of the country and remind their descendants of the beauty of politics practiced in their youthful days.
“It pains me that politics has made respect for the aged diminish. You are our pillars, some of you were around during Nkrumah’s reign; you hold the history. Teach the history of the country and the party. Teach the youth so they do not take peace and stability for granted. Encourage them not to be influenced by power to engage in chaos.”
Speaking at the gathering, a representative of the Adabraka Muslim Chief, Alhaji Ali Issah urged the constituents to pursue peace. “NDC is our blood, it is a part of our lives so let’s advise our people to do everything possible to uphold the dignity of the party”.
Some of the beneficiaries expressed their profound gratitude and prayed for an abundance of grace and enlargement of her coast.
Madam Charlotte Okine, an aged party stalwart, educated on the need to rally support behind Dr Zanetor and take a firm stance on issues relating to the party.
Another beneficiary, Mr Henry Quartey, encouraged participation to ensure the reign of the party becomes an inheritance, and to break the 8-year jinx.
Also in attendance were the National Organizer, Joshua Akamba, Womens’ Organizer, Constituency Chairman, Regional Vice Chairman and a host of dignitaries.
Four Committees for Daasebre Oti Boateng’s funeral inaugurated
Four committees have been inaugurated to plan for the observance of the one-week rites for the Omanhene of the New Juaben Traditional Area, Daasebre Professor Emeritus Oti Boateng.
The planning will also include that of the Queenmother of the paramountcy, Nana Yaa Daani II.
The Omanhene passed on August 10, last year while the Queenmother passed nearly two weeks ago.
The one-week observance has been scheduled for March 7, this year but the dates for the final funeral rites are yet to be determined.
The committees are protocol and security, publicity, hospitality/reception and finance.
The protocol and security committee is chaired by the Gyasehene, Nana Twumasi Danquah, and the committee will identify all chiefs, queen mothers, individuals, organisations and groups to be invited for the one-week rites and the funeral.
It will also provide details of names and chief mourners that will appear on posters, invitation cards, radio and television commercials as well as ensuring security of persons and properties before, during and immediately after each event.
The Apegyahene of the New Juaben Traditional Area, Nana Kwame Duah, is heading the publicity committee assigned to undertake all public relations works before, during and after the event.
The committee will also provide accreditation for individuals and groups of people who may require them and at the time design and provide all materials needed to inform and invite all sympathisers, in collaboration with the protocol and security committee.
The hospitality and reception committee has been placed under the care of Opanin Kwasi Okyere to organise receptions/refreshments for guests and sympathisers, identify and recommend accommodation facilities for guests.
It will also plan and undertake or recommend all works to give a facelift to the town and the palace environs, in particular.
The finance committee, which is being headed by Mr Gabby Asare Okyere Darko, has been entrusted to provide the budget for each event.
The committee is also to raise the needed funds as recommended in the budget and ensure judicious use of funds raised for the events.
Addressing the committees at the Yiadom-Hwedie Palace in Koforidua last Friday, the Juabenhene, Nana Otuo Siriboe II, who has assumed leadership role towards organising the burial and funeral rites of Daasebre Oti Boateng, his brother, and the queen mother, entreated the committees to immediately start work, especially towards the observance of the one-week rites.
He explained that it was because they had only six weeks away from those rites to be performed.
Nana Otuo Siriboe, who is also the Chairman of the Council of State, also reminded the committees that they would continue to work after the one-week observance for the final funeral rites.
To ensure the successful implementation of all planned activities, the Juabenhene urged the committees to submit all their work plans to him for verification within two weeks.
The Apegyahene, who is in charge of the publicity committee, responded on behalf of the committee members and gave an assurance that they would execute the task assigned to them with passion.
Minority’s message of caution to Ghanaians on e-levy
The Minority in Parliament says it will have nothing to do with the negative impact of the Electronic Transaction Levy on the economy.
Member of Parliament for Techiman, Elizabeth Ofosu Agyare, says the National Democratic Congress Members of Parliament have resolved to present all 137 Members of Parliament to vote against the bill whenever it comes up in Parliament even though the majority may have their way when fully represented.
Speaking at the NDC Town Hall meeting in Kumasi, the MP said the levy will kill businesses in the country.
The Minority is proposing the government consider retrieving the 12 billion cedis lost to corruption in 2020 as stated in the auditor general’s report to make up for the lost revenue.
Elizabeth Ofosu Agyare further proposed a cut of government expenditures.
Monkeys play by sizes, allow MPs to mature; don’t change them like shirts – Speaker to electorates
Speaker Alban Sumana Kingsford Bagbin has advised Ghanaian electorates to allow Members of Parliament to gain adequate experience in the workings of the House instead of voting them out every four years.
Speaking at this year’s Commonwealth Parliamentary Association workshop, the Speaker explained that frequent change of legislators makes them unable to contribute substantially to the development of their respective constituencies.
Mr. Alban Bagbin, therefore, entreated electorates to allow their representatives enough time in office to foster consistent growth in their constituencies.
“In this game, monkeys play by sizes. It is good and proper to allow elected Members of Parliament to mature in Parliament. You can’t keep changing your members of Parliament like shirts and expect to reap good dividends.”
“You must give them the time to grow to be able to produce the dividends that you want,” the Speaker urged.
Monday’s workshop was on the theme “Effective parliamentary scrutiny, gender sensitivity and complexity.”
Touching on the success of the House, the Speaker pushed for extensive consultation between the Majority and Minority Group on government’s policies.
According to him, prioritising consultation is imperative for the development of the country as the 8th Parliament is a hung Parliament.
“The only way is to get the two sides to consult and to dialogue with each other, to cooperate, to compromise, to collaborate to achieve consensus, this is an imperative imposed on us political leaders by the people of Ghana, we have no choice,” he said.
His comments come as a time when the Majority and Minority have gone fist-to-fist over the approval of government policies such as the E-levy Bill.
To ensure the House does not witness another scuffle when it resumes on Tuesday, January 25, the Speaker is calling for deeper consultation.
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