The Privileges Committee of Parliament yesterday threw out the media who had gone to cover the alleged contemptuous statement made by the MP for Assin Central, Kennedy Agyapong.
The media, who had earlier had the impression that the committee’s sitting was open to it, represented fully at the commencement of the meeting.
However, upon the entry of the star witness, Muntaka Mohammed Mubarak, MP for Asawase, the Chairman asked the media to excuse the committee.
Muntaka appeared surprised at the full representation of the media, and many believed there was general discomfort with the high media turnout, hence the chairman’s decision.
The Privileges Committee, in President Mahama’s era, heard the case of Black Rasta, a popular musician and radio broadcaster who allegedly asserted that about 80% of Parliamentarians smoke marijuana (wee).
Same hearing was done live with a full representation of the media.
Similarly, an Associate Professor in Clinical Pharmacology at the School of Medicine and Dentistry, at the University of Ghana, Professor Alex Dodoo, was hauled before the Committee for allegedly calling Members of Parliament (MPs) ‘ignorant’ over their comments regarding the Ebola vaccine.
Same was also heard in public with full media representation.
Members of the media who were thrown out yesterday wondered why the Chairman took that decision.
The committee had met per the mandate given it by the Constitution and the Standing Orders of the House because it received complaint that the Member for South Assin constituency, Kennedy Agyapong had made statements which seemed to bring the image of the House to disrepute.
Speaking to the media after the sitting, Muntaka indicated that he had furnished the Committee with every evidence it needed.
He also added that he had answered all questions that were put to him, adding that it was for the Committee to ascertain whether the evidence he brought merited his allegations of Kenny Agyepong being contemptuous.
He said it was his hope that, after looking at the videos, voices and other evidences presented to the Committee, it would come to the conclusion that indeed the MP was contemptuous of the House.
Hearing has been slated for July 3rd, 2018.
By: Frederick E. Aggrey