The Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin, has indicated that the house will work to put to rest all concerns with the payment of double salaries to some members of the House.
The Speaker contends that the excess payment to MPs and other staff of the house is a weakness in the system.
Delivering his opening remarks after parliament returned from recess, the Speaker said MPs do not intentionally decide to get paid double salaries.
“It is important for us to erase the perception of the public on these matters of an overpayment which is politically called double salaries. It is a weakness in the system. All the committees have commented on the matter. That’s the experience from 1993 till date, and it has led to these unfortunate overpayments due to the weakness of the system”, the speaker lamented.
Issues of the payment of double salaries to MPs resurfaced in 2018 after some NDC MPs allegedly benefited from it while serving as both Members of Parliament and Ministers or Deputy Ministers.
25 of the MPs were initially asked to report to the police, but 18 of them were later asked to disregard that invitation.
The Police during its investigation interrogated a number of the accused MPs.
But this, according to the Speaker, needs total fixing given the hardship the ordinary Ghanaian is facing.
“MPs don’t intentionally go round taking a double salary. We need to put this to rest in order to position ourselves to be able to do our work. I intend with the help of the Parliamentary Service Board to do this with dispatch. The leadership of the house, the Parliamentary Service Board, and the Speaker will continue to widen the scope of the already cordial relationship between the judiciary and the legislature and the government to work in harmony for the betterment of the lives of Ghanaians.”
The Minority in Parliament had earlier denied the allegations against its members, saying no crime had been committed.
Per the dictates of public service, an official who occupies both positions is entitled to a single salary, usually equal to the level of a Minister of State.
In the wake of the alleged ‘double salary’ scandal, the Controller and Accountant General’s Department (CAGD), suggested integrating the Parliamentary Service, which is responsible for the payment of the MPs, onto their payroll to help address these anomalies.
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