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The Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin, has debunked news reports suggesting that he granted permission to Dome Kwabenya MP, Adwoa Safo to be absent from Parliament.
According to him, the votes and proceedings of parliament are clear on whether the embattled MP has permission to be absent from parliament or not.
The Speaker addressed the issue on the floor of parliament on Thursday.
“It is being alleged that I granted an interview to say that Adwoa Safo received permission from me to absent herself from Parliament on health grounds. I want it to be known by all that I have not granted any such interview anywhere. I have not said anything like that anywhere. It is not the Speaker who determines who is present and who is absent.”
The Dome-Kwabenya MP has been the subject of criticisms from some of her colleagues for absenting herself from Parliament since the current Parliament started sitting.
They accuse her of holding the Majority Caucus to ransom, considering the numbers needed to pass the controversial E-levy bill.
Adwoa Safo has been accused of requesting to be made the Deputy Majority Leader in Parliament, a position she held in the previous Parliament, and had decided to stay away from Parliament because her demand had been turned down.
Per the constitution and parliamentary procedure, an MP who is absent from Parliament for more than 15 days can be hauled before the Privileges Committee, which can lead to the seat being declared vacant.