Member of Parliament for Ningo-Prampram, Sam George, has asserted that the Minority in Parliament will employ all legal means within parliamentary procedure to stop the Deputy Speaker from voting when presiding over proceedings of the House.
He said this in reaction to the Supreme Court’s ruling on Wednesday that a Deputy Speaker of Parliament can be counted during the formation of a quorum for parliamentary decision-making as well as participate in voting, while presiding.
According to Mr George, the Supreme Court’s judgment is an illegality.
“I deem it an illegality which would be that the person presiding in the House will take part in the vote he is superintending over,” he said.
Mr George stated that the Minority would ensure that the time tested practice of Parliament which is 30 years old this year, will be upheld.
“Until the Lord Justices decide to start expunging part of the Constitution for us to see that the application of the law is not skewed and imbalanced, I do not see why anyone who has the conflict of interest should be allowed to vote because 104(5) says you have a conflict of interest so do not vote.
“Why did the Lord Justices go silent on the standing orders of Parliament that says that a Chairman of the Committee does not have an original vote? So why are they not saying that that is also a deprivation of his constituents?” he asked.
He further prayed the Lord Justices not to “lead us into confusion and obfuscate what the facts are”, adding that their role is to bring clarity.
He said although the Supreme Court judges have passed their judgment, the law is clear, that Parliament is a master of its own procedure.
Therefore, “we would carry out what we believe is right on the floor of the Chamber.”