Alban Kingsford Sumana Bagbin
Speaker of Parliament, Alban Kingsford Sumana Bagbin has defended the Member of Parliament for Madina, Francis-Xavier Sosu over his case with the Police administration concerning a demonstration he led in his constituency that turned chaotic.
Mr Bagbin said Members of Parliament are not above the law.
Speaking at the Speaker’s Breakfast Forum held in Kumasi on Monday, 15 November 2021 he said the MP went through the necessary processes with the police before the demonstration.
He wondered why some police personnel were sent for his arrest while addressing his constituents.
He noted that the police gave the MP a date for the demonstration and also deployed policemen to protect the demonstration.
Mr Bagbin described the attitude of the police as “obstruction”, adding that “the article 112 is very clear on that”.
He said: “In this particular instance of the Member of Parliament for Madina, I can put my neck for it that you have no such power after he had gone through all the processes with you and you gave the date and you sent your men to go down with them for the procession, then he is addressing them at the end of the day and you send a different contingent to go and arrest him while he’s talking to his constituents, that is obstruction and article 122 is very clear on that”.
The speaker has refused to release Mr Sosu to the police for investigation after the MP led his constituents to demonstrate over poor roads in his constituency.
The demonstration turned chaotic when the constituents blocked some roads and destroyed public property.
The Police after several failed attempts to arrest the MP have obtained a court summons and charged the MP with obstructing the highway and causing damage to public property.
The Speaker in a letter told the Police that to arrest a sitting MP, the appropriate procedure is to secure from the Speaker, a certificate that the MP in question is not attending to Parliamentary business.
He noted that anything short of this will not be entertained by Parliament.
Mr Bagbin stated that the immunities and privileges of MPs are not absolute but the procedure for causing the arrest of a sitting MP must be in accordance with the constitution.