The Supreme Court has in a unanimous decision ruled that a case filed against Parliament’s approval of the budget on November 30, 2021, is moot.
The Court stated that it’s judgement that held that a Deputy Speaker can vote and form part of a quorum for decision making while presiding, deals with this matter.
Broadcaster Richard Dela Sky filed the case against the Attorney-General challenging the decision by Deputy Speaker, Joe Osei-Owusu to vote in the determination that led to the approval of the budget, when he presided over the affairs of the House in the absence of the Speaker.
He also asked for a declaration that upon a true and proper interpretation of Articles 95(1), 96(1), and 104(1), any time a Deputy Speaker or any other person presides over Parliament in the absence of the Speaker, that person forfeits the right to be counted as a part of the MPs present for the determination of a matter.
He further wanted an order to set aside the decision of the 138 NPP MPs which approved the budget in the absence of the Speaker on November 30, 2021.
But the Court presided over by Justice Jones Dotse said its earlier judgement substantially addresses the issues in the Sky case.
The case was heard by Justice Jones Dotse and assisted by Justices Nene Amegatcher, Avril Lovelace Johnson, Gertrude Torkornoo, Henrietta Mensah-Bonsu and Yonni Kulendi.
Meanwhile, Mr Sky has another case pending at the Supreme Court.
In that case, he’s challenging Parliament’s rejection of the 2022 budget on November 26, 2021, without the participation of the NPP MPs.
He insists that at the time the matter was put to vote there were only 137 MPs in the House. This he argues meant the constitutional threshold of half of the 275 members of Parliament needed to form a quorum for decision making had not been met.
He, therefore, wants the Apex Court to set aside the purported vote by the House and also to declare that the Speaker of Parliament failed to uphold, preserve and defend the Constitution and hence breached his oath of office.