The new Minority Leadership in Parliament led by Dr. Ato Forson has announced that its most immediate focus is to unite the Minority Caucus, so that they work as a top team with a collective interest in achieving party success by that belong. .
“Our first responsibility is to unite the Caucus and that would be number one on the agenda. Things of this nature happen; but obviously there is a need for us to show leadership and that is what we would do,” Dr. Ato Forson said Thursday morning at his first press conference after the National Democratic Congress (NDC) officially announced him as the new minority leader.
“I have had fruitful, positive and indeed frank discussions with my elder brother, the Honorable Haruna Iddrisu. I praised him for his admirable leadership and stewardship when our great party gave him the opportunity to lead us.
“As a leader, it would be my duty to represent our particular collective goals with unwavering dedication and, most importantly, with great integrity. I have no doubt that with the support of the entire Minority Caucus in Parliament, we will succeed and may Almighty God guide and bless us all,” the Minority Leader noted.
“I would appeal to the rank and file of our great NDC party to remain calm. Members of parliament are in good hands, we would work with them with due diligence,” added the minority leader.
He said he is not a newbie to Parliament and knows his onions in the Legislature: “Obviously we are not new to this House. I have been in this House for 14 years. I know the capabilities of all our colleagues. I met some of them, some came to meet me, I have worked closely with most of our colleagues and I can assure you that together we will achieve it”.
Dr. Ato Forson was flanked at the briefing by the new minority leader, Governs Kwame Agbodza, and the minority’s first deputy, Ahmed Ibrahim.
The new leader of the inescapable minority, launched some blows to the government of the day:
“Most importantly, I would focus in the coming months to address three things: Firstly, I want to send the message to the New Patriotic Party (NPP) that the people of Ghana are asking them to reduce the size of their government to reflect the mood of the county.
“You are asking people to give up their coupons or interest. You are asking the ordinary Ghanaian to sacrifice their pay and therefore if His Excellency the President intends to reshuffle his government let it be known that we in the NDC would not accept an attempt to increase the size of the Government and if the current size of your Ministers increase by one, that person would not receive our cooperation.
“We also wish to reassure the people of Ghana that, as part of our commitment to the Finance Committee and the Health Committee, we have agreed to hold a public hearing on the audit of COVID-19 expenditures beginning February 7, 2023. At that time, we would pay due diligence to the duty entrusted to us by the people of Ghana.
“Ultimately, we would embark on a road show where we would galvanize the people of Ghana and educate them on the meaning of what this economic crisis will bring us,” he added.
The new Minority leadership later that day paid a courtesy visit to the NDC national leadership at the party’s national headquarters.
They held a closed-door meeting to deliberate on ways to resolve the tension of grievances within the party following the change in parliamentary leadership.
The Group’s leadership also visited Parliament Speaker Alban Bagbin at his residence, where they held a meeting with him behind closed doors.
Ellembelle MP Kofi Buah, who has been appointed deputy minority leader, said the visit was part of his commitments.
He said that “our priority right now is to make sure we unite our caucus that is so important to us.”
“As part of these engagements, we visited the Speaker’s residence, a courtesy visit only. We were warmly received. We have also benefited from his sage advice. So we’re very encouraged by that. We thanked him,” Buah added.