The Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin, has broken silence on his health status after returning from a medical review in Dubai.
Alban Bagbin flew out of the country on Saturday, November 27, 2021, after presiding over a parliamentary sitting that saw an all minority MP side reject the 2022 budget statement.
In his absence, the first deputy speaker, Joseph Osei Owusu, and the second deputy speaker, Andrew Asiamah, took turns in presiding over the business of the house.
The former Nadoli Kaleo MP returned to the country on Tuesday, December 14, 2021, but was not immediately able to take the chair until Thursday, December 16, 2021.
Speaking on his health issues at a forum to address former Members of Parliament (MPs) on Thursday, December 23, 2021, Alban Bagbin disclosed that he is not like before.
This was after he had addressed some key issues that had transpired on the floor of parliament on Monday, December 20, 2021.
“I will not do anything as a speaker to obstruct the business of government…never will I allow myself to be used as an errand boy of any president. It won’t happen” he said.
“I have been given a privileged opportunity to bring a change to help the good of Ghana. I pledge to do nothing but that. I’m being blamed today for being the cause of parliament’s [inability] to take a decision on the e-levy and the [nuances] that we all saw. But you know, as I stand you can see me looking fresh and healthy but that doesn’t mean that I’m like before”, Bagbin added.
The subject of the speaker’s health has recently taken centre stage as the majority cause has launched a barrage of attacks on him for absenting himself during a vote to determine if the e-levy bill should be considered under a certificate of urgency.
But the minority has defended the speaker saying it was for health reasons he recused himself.
Alban Bagbin in a statement after he travelled to Dubai urged Ghanaians to desist from politicizing his health issues after receiving public backlash for his trip.
“Let it be placed on record that the Speaker is accompanied by four officials, to the exclusion of his aide de camp, protocol officer, butler and other relevant staff. The Speaker’s Office will again [sic] like to state that, as part of their conditions of service, Speakers of Ghana’s Parliament are entitled to such routine medical check-ups, just like officials of the executive and judiciary arms [sic] of government.
“The Office will advise that the health issues of the Speaker and that of office-bearers [be] not politicised, as anybody could be taken ill at any time. It is an undeniable fact that the membership of the House is one whole group with a common agenda and destiny,” the statement said.