The high attrition rate of Parliamentarians is a bane to development in Parliament, Mr Alban Sumana Kingsford Bagbin, the Second Deputy Speaker of Parliament has said.
"One requires time and effort to learn and grasp the practices and procedures of Parliament," Mr Bagbin stated at the Ninth Congregation of the University of Professional Studies, Accra (UPSA).
Mr Bagbin said: "To be able to maintain the knowledgeable and experienced law makers, there is the need for political parties and the electorate to make a conscious effort to retain experienced lawmakers during elections. Otherwise, we risk the scary situation of having our Parliament taken over by people with fat wallets, money bags and who may not have what it takes to expand the frontiers of our democracy".
"Our ability to retain experienced lawmakers would provide the vehicle for the transfer of experience, knowledge and wisdom to newly elected members," he added.
He said the various political parties needed to introspect on the selection process of their parliamentary candidates.
"They are undermining the growth of Parliament and consciously or unconsciously institutionalising corruption.
“We cannot behave like ostriches. As a nation, we shall reap, what we sow," the Second Deputy Speaker said.
At the Congregation, an honorary doctorate degree was conferred on him, Mr. Osei Kyei Mensah-Bonsu, Majority Leader and Minister for Parliamentary Affairs; and Dr Nii Kotei Dzani, Chief Executive Officer of Ideal Group and the Greater Accra Regional Representative on the Council of State.
The confinement of the honorary doctorate degrees on the trio was in recognition of their contributions towards Ghana's socio-economic development and their outstanding achievements in the field of endeavours.
The congregation, which was on the theme "Celebrating Professional and Scholarly Excellence for Accelerated Nation Building", was under the sponsorship of the UMB, Access Bank, United Pension Trustees Limited, Excellence Business College, Ideal Financial Services and SIC Life as its sponsors.
Mr Bagbin: "The Chancellor, the Vice Chancellor, your Institution, scanning Parliament, settled on the two of us, A. S. K. Bagbin and Osei Kyei Mensah-Bonsu. The two of us are not instant products."
"Bagbin started his parliamentary carried in 1993. He is into his seventh successive term I Parliament - his 25th year now.
Mr Bagbin is the only surviving remaining MP of the pioneer fourth Republican MPs," he said.
Mr Bagbin noted: "Osei Kyei Mensah-Bonsu is into his 21st year, his sixth successive as a Member of Parliament. Coincidentally, he is the only of the NPP pioneer group that first entered Parliament in 1997."
"There is something in experience in Parliament," he said.
Mr Bagbin, on behalf of his colleagues awardees expressed gratitude to the Management and Staff of the UPSA for the honour done them.
He said the award would go a long way to motivate them to do more for mother Ghana.
On his part, Dr Dzani, himself an alumnus of the UPSA announced that the Ideal Group would set a scholarship scheme at the UPSA, which would sponsor 10 students annually.
He also announced that the Group would grant 10 automatic employment opportunities to graduates from UPSA.
During the Congregation, a total of 4,007 students graduated, which is the highest in the history of the University.
Of the number, there were 280 diplomates, 3,255 undergraduate and 472 postgraduate students.
Processor Abednego Feehi Okoe Amartey, the Vice Chancellor of the UPSA, in his maiden report to the Congregation, said the four strategic goals that the University was anchored under his leadership were: Enhancing institutional image and development, improving institutional effectiveness, promoting research and enterprise and effectively competing in the global higher education environment.
He said the University would be setting up a the Vice Chancellor's Endowment Fund, to enable bright, but needy students to receive undergraduate and postgraduate education at the UPSA, against their personal pledge to work for Ghana upon graduation.
He announced that Barclays Bank Limited had selected the UPSA as one of its beneficiary of the Barclays Tertiary Scholarship.
He said the scholarship would be disbursed to 15 students each academic year.
Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh, the Minister of Education, in a speech read on his directed all public universities to reverse to the 2016/2017 academic year fees, pending the outcome of the Parliamentary decision on the new fees.
He said the concern expressed by the public universities on the Finance Ministry's directive that all public universities were required to cede 34 per cent of the internally generated funds to government was receiving due attention.
Drolor Bosso Adamtey I, UPSA Chancellor, who presided over the Congregation, advised the graduating students to be innovative to create opportunities for themselves and others.
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