POLITICS

I Didn’t Instigate Near-Brawl In Parliament…Sam George Must Apologize To Me – NAPO

Matthew Opoku Prempeh

Education Minister, DR Matthew Opoku Prempeh has called on Ningo Prampram MP, Sam George to render an apology to him for making “unfounded allegations” against him.

The Education Minister, in a statement issued today (Friday), took “grave exception to the scurrilous and unfounded allegations” by Hon Sam George, and impressed on the latter to do the “honourable thing by swiftly apologizing for his unfounded allegation“.

The NDC Member of Parliament reportedly accused Hon. Opoku Prempeh of using abusive words on his person and another colleague MP, which then escalated tensions resulting in the near-brawl on the floor of the House Thursday.

Sam George is reported to have stated that the Minister labeled Hon Alhassan Suhuyini “a fool” following confrontations between the majority and minority in Parliament moments after the Speaker, Rt Hon Mike Aaron Oquaye left the building.

“…Napo [as I am known by many] had called him [Alhassan Suhuyini] a fool. During the proceedings, he called him ‘kwasia’ and that is what triggered the whole thing…four weeks ago he called me a fool on the floor of the House simply because I had asked the Speaker to ask him if he was wearing a school uniform or was properly attired to Parliament”, Sam George is quoted to have said.

But, a clearly riled Dr Opoku Prempeh, dismissed reports that he sparked commotion that occurred in Parliament on Thursday, March 30, after the Joe Ghartey Committee presented its report on the bribery allegations.

Stridently denying he “used that word on Hon. Suhuyini during the proceedings or at any other time in Parliament,” the Education Minister,  who is also the MP for Manhyia South pointed out that, “during yesterday’s proceedings, only four Members of Parliament spoke. They are the Majority and Minority Leaders, Hon. Alban Bagbin and Hon. Ayariga. In any event, whilst the Hansard (a verbatim record of proceedings) relating to yesterday’s proceedings is not yet available, the proceedings were televised live.

“Clearly, I would have been heard by viewers uttering those words if indeed Hon. Sam George heard them, as he sits on the other side of the House. No doubt the Speaker too would have heard and certainly would have swiftly ordered that I withdraw the word. No such thing occurred…”

Read full statement below:

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Friday, 31st March, 2017

PRESS RELEASE: INSULT ALLEGATIONS BY HON. SAM GEORGE

My attention has been drawn to a news item on citifmonline.com, dated Friday 31st March, 2017. The headline reads “Napo triggered anger in Parliament, called Suhuyini a ‘fool’ – Sam George”.

In the said news item, which was in relation to proceedings in the House yesterday Thursday 30th March, 2017, the Member of Parliament for Ningo Prampram, Hon. Sam George is quoted to have said that “…Napo [as I am known by many] had called him [Alhassan Suhuyini] a fool. Durign the proceedings, he called him ‘kwasia’ and that is what triggered the whole thing…four weeks ago he called me a fool on the floor of the House simply because I had asked the Speaker to ask him if he was wearing a school uniform or was properly attired to Parliament”.

First I absolutely and unequivocally deny that I used that word on Hon. Suhuyini during the proceedings or at any other time in Parliament yesterday. It must be noted that during yesterday’s proceedings, only four Members of Parliament spoke. They are the Majority and Minority Leaders, Hon. Alban Bagbin and Hon. Ayariga. In any event, whilst the Hansard (a verbatim record of proceedings) relating to yesterday’s proceedings is not yet available, the proceedings were televised live.

Clearly, I would have been heard by viewers uttering those words if indeed Hon. Sam George heard them, as he sits on the other side of the House. No doubt the Speaker too would have heard and certainly would have swiftly ordered that I withdraw the word. No such thing occurred, as viewers of yesterday’s proceedings would note…at no point did I refer to him in the manner he alleges.

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I take grave grave exception to the scurrilous and unfounded allegations by my colleague Member of Parliament. The people of Ghana have reposed utmost confidence in us by electing us to represent them in the House. It is therefore important that at all times we conduct ourselves with decorum to preserve the integrity of the House and to justify that confidence.

I expect Hon. Sam George to do the honourable thing by swiftly apologizing for his unfounded allegation.

Hon. Dr. Matthew Opoku Prempeh

MP, Manhyia South Constituency & Minister for Education

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