Gabby Asare Otchere Darko, a leading member of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) who is also a cousin to President Nana Akufo-Addo has held a dialogue with former President John Mahama over the lack of cool heads between the leadership of the two major political parties in Parliament.
Confirming the said meeting, Mr. Mahama took said on his Facebook wall that Mr. Otchere-Darko requested to see him at the former’s residence.
“I received Mr. Gabby Otchere Darko, at his request, at my residence on Tuesday 21st December, 2021,” he said “Among issues we discussed was the desire of Ghanaians to see the two major political parties working together for the interest of the nation.”
This follows the exchange of blows in Parliament last Monday night when the Majority wanted to approve the controversial e-levy which was also opposed by the Minority group, leading to the adjournment of the House on Tuesday till January 18.
But former President Mahama who was the 2020 flagbearer of the NDC also noted that President Akufo-Addo did not seek his intervention on the E-Levy impasse.
“Among issues we discussed was the desire of Ghanaians to see the two major political parties working together for the interest of the nation,” Mahama added.
“We discussed, also, how dialogue can be deployed to ensure Parliamentary issues are agreed consensually before coming on the floor to avoid what happened recently in the House. We further discussed opening channels of communication between the leaders of the two parties including a possible meeting with the President at a future date,” he stressed.
He concluded that “At no time was there any discussion specifically about the President requiring my intervention in the impasse on the E-levy.”
What The Visit Means
The majority group has 137 MPs plus the Second Deputy Speaker, Andrew Asiamah, who won the Fomena seat as an independent candidate but decided to do business with the NPP side.
The minority caucus on the other hand has 137 members.
Technically, the NDC and NPP both have the same number of MPs in the law-making chamber, the reason there is always the interlocking of horns in the plenary whenever it is time to vote on various policies of the Akufo-Addo government.
It is for this reason that the ruling NPP wants to get the leadership of the NDC to reach an agreement that will be binding on the members of the Minority.
Mr. Mahama may not be able to agree to the terms of the NPP who have settled on Gabby Asare Otchere-Darko to lead the discussions for harmony in Parliament where most policies of the government will be debated.
Although he is the only former president in NDC who is alive and the most popular person in the party, the even temper and mutual respect being sought by the NPP among the two groups in Parliament cannot be sanctioned by John Mahama. Instead, the NPP will have to meet the Council of Elders and the leadership of the NDC who are the highest decision-making body in the umbrella family.
Until then, the impasse will continue in Parliament, especially when all members of the Majority side are not likely to be present in the House at all times.