Parliament to ban use of mobile phones by members

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Parliament is to ban the use of mobile phones used by Members of Parliament in the chamber to avoid distractions.

Speaking during the presentation of the Business statement, Majority Leader, Osei Kyei Mensah Bonsu argued that the decision is contained in the new standing orders to be approved soon.

Speaking on the floor of Parliament today March 5 2020, the Majority Leader argued that over the years, whenever proceedings are ongoing, and Parliament receives special guests Members of Parliament will be seen fidgeting with their phones and others going out to receive calls whilst proceedings are ongoing.

Reports indicate that this was triggered by an action from North Tongu MP , Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa who asked a question during the presentation of the business statement but when Osei-Mensah Bonsu was ready to deliver the answer, according to the Majority leader, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa was fidgeting with his phone so he drew his attention to the fact that he was ready to answer his question.

On the floor of Parliament, the Majority Leader who doubles as the Member of Parliament for Suame cited situations where Members are constantly on their phones in the chamber when the House is in session as the basis for the move adding these he believes that these practices serve as distractions during Parliamentary proceedings

”Weeks ago, a popular TV station was discussing how Members of Parliament while proceedings are ongoing use their phones. A time is coming where no member will be allowed to bring cellphones into the Chamber. We need to demonstrate seriousness in this House. When the President of the Republic is talking, MPs are on the phone, when a Minister comes here MPs are on their phones. The Parliament of Ghana is not the only Parliament in the world and there are other established Parliaments in the world who do not allow members to use their cellphones in Parliament. Mr Speaker , we should apply this to our Parliament”.

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