Concerned Assembly Members Association of Ghana, CAMAG have thrown their weight behind former president John Mahama over his promise to put Assembly Members on salary when given the mandate in the December 7 elections.
The association which comprises of assembly members from various Electoral Areas across the country has expressed their readiness to go to the grounds to campaign for Mr Mahama to be able to make his promise a reality.
CAMAG noted that, it has welcomed the good news from Mahama “because this year’s election is going to be based on policies especially those that will inure to the benefit of assembly members”.
At a press conference in Tamale, the association noted they will do anything to support anyone who makes their welfare a priority. While enumerating the challenges assembly members go through at their various electoral areas, CAMAG is hopeful that, with the promise made by John Mahama the over 28 years of work without reward by assembly members will soon come to an end.
The association also stated categorically that, they are not wearing any political color in this regard but is only interested in a vision that encompass the entirety of assembly members.
“So let us not cloud ourselves with our political colors to destroy what will help us, let’s all endeavor to assess whatever promises that comes in regards to our collective welfare. We also call on all Assembly Members and well-meaning Ghanaians to support HIS EXCELLENCY JOHN DRAMANI MAHAMA the flag bearer of the National Democratic Congress towards the welfare of Assembly Members thus paying each Assembly Member a monthly allowance”
“It’s not because we believe that, NDC must come back to power again but we believe that the time has come for those who seek to govern us to consider the welfare of honorable assembly members and this we are ready to pursue to the last drop of our blood”.
David Attah Twum, national coordinator for CAMAG who addressed the press implored all assembly members, (elected and appointed) to put in much efforts to canvass for votes to ensure former president Mahama wins the election for their plight to be elevated.
“So going forward into election 2020, if you have his Excellency John Dramani Mahama promising and not just promising but telling us how he’s going to make it possible to make sure that 28 years of our fourth republic, assembly members are considered in his next administration then there’s a call for us to rise up, there is a call for us to campaign from house to house, door to door, room to room, bed to bed, market to market to make sure that his Excellency John Dramani Mahama is elected as the president of the fourth republic of Ghana”, he said.
On whether it was feasible promise or not, the association expressed its disappointment at government officials who downplayed the promise by John Mahama.
According to them, it was disappointing for government officials who are supposed to ensure their welfare to be criticizing a policy that seeks to benefit them knowing the role assembly members play in the governance system.
They noted that, the best thing those government officials could do is to give them alternative policies that are targeted at ensuring their wellbeing and not to castigate such a pleasing promise.
“it’s obvious that, you will hear from the other side, those who are supposed to know better, instead of them to give us policy directions, instead of them giving us alternative for we the assembly members to consider whether what they are giving us is good or bad they are rather downplaying with this policy, some are telling us it is not constitutional, then the question we ask ourselves is that those who are saying it’s not constitutional what is their purpose at the parliament house?”, David Atta Twum quizzed.
Some of the Assembly members who spoke to Starr news bemoan what they go through serving as assembly members.
Former president Mahama made a commitment to put assembly members on salary when voted into power.
The former president believes that, assembly members play a major role in the governance system yet do not get any reward for their work.
On July 27, 2020 while outdooring his running mate, John Mahama promised to pay assembly members monthly salary.
Even though his promise was downplayed by the local government minister, Hajia Alima Mahama, Mr. Mahama reiterated it while addressing the king of Dagbon, Yaa Naa Abukari Mahama II and his subjects at the Gbewaa palace in Yendi.
He said, he intends to reduce the size of a future NDC government and channel the monies into rewarding assembly members.