Westminster parliamentary system; best for Ghana – Hon. Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu

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The Majority Leader and Member of Parliament for Suame, Mr. Osei Kyei-Mesnsah-Bonsu, has indicated that the best parliamentary system for Ghana is the Westminster system of Parliament.


In his statement, he pointed out that the Westminster system is in a better construction as compared to other systems of Parliament especially, the Presidential-parliamentary system.

“If we have to strengthen Parliament, the best system is the Westminster. I am of the view that Ghana should reverse to the Westminster system of Parliament”, he reiterated.

Mr. Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu made these remarks at the Office of the Speaker of Parliament, Prof. Mike Oquaye, when a delegation from Israel paid a courtesy visit to Parliament.

He further added that Ghana can learn from the Westminster system of Israel in enhancing the activities of Ghana’s parliament through the Ghana-China Parliamentary Friendship Association.

Delving into other sectors of the economy, Mr. Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu informed the Israeli delegation that there are various areas that Ghana must co-operate with Israel, especially, in Ghana’s agricultural sector.

“For now, the current government is emphasising the delivery of minor dams in the three Northern Regions to assist in the enhancement of agricultural productivity in the country. Israel’s participation in the construction of these minor dams will be of great importance”, he suggested.

The parliamentary system of Ghana

Ghana’s Parliament operates very much on the lines of the Hybrid parliamentary system. It follows to some extent, the Westminster model, making provision for Ministers to be questioned in Parliament, statements delivery on matters of public importance by MPs, introducing motions on matters of importance and approval of Government’s policies in general, by the House.

Ghana’s Legislature is characterised by a single legislative chamber, composed of 275 Members of Parliament from single-member constituencies with an Executive President.

The Executive, has majority of ministers appointed from Parliament. Meanwhile, ministers appointed from outside Parliament, may participate in debates in the House but cannot vote on motions.

The Government, for example, cannot enter into any international agreement without the ratification of Parliament.

The Westminster system of Parliament

The Westminster system is a democratic parliamentary system of government modelled after that of the United Kingdom.

The system is a series of procedures for operating a legislature. It is also used, or was once used, in most Commonwealth and former Commonwealth nations, beginning with the Canadian provinces in the mid-19th century.

Most of the procedures of the Westminster system have originated with the conventions, practices and precedents of the UK parliament, which is part of the British constitution.

In a Westminster system, some Members of Parliament are elected by popular vote, while others are appointed.

All Westminster-based parliaments have a House of Commons, comprised of local, elected representatives of the people, and a smaller upper house, which can come in a variety of different forms.

The Westminster system tends to have extremely well-disciplined legislative parties in which it is highly unusual for a legislator to vote against their party, and in which no-confidence votes are very rare.

Conversely, legislative committees in Westminster systems tend to be weak, though they often have the ability to force a government to reveal certain pieces of information.

Source: GhanaJustice/S.Ayisi


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