A Member of Parliament is perceived as powerful, resourceful, and wealthy but outside Parliament, the reality is different for some.
The Deputy Majority Leader, Alexander Afenyo-Markin, says the lives of some former legislators are sorrowful, replete with regrets and pains.
This he stated is because “many MPs have retired as paupers and have had to endure the pain and stress of paying for private loans they contracted during their time in office to provide for the needs of their constituents.”
He disclosed this at a public lecture organised by the law faculty of the Ghana Institute for Management and Public Administration (GIMPA).
According to him, “although lawmakers are not strictly speaking, development agents, many MPs, and I am of no exception, have had to dig so deep into their private pockets to provide private infrastructure to benefit underserved communities in their constituencies.”
He described the situation as unhealthy.
“If you do your checklist from 1992 to date and you see the situation that former MPs find themselves, you will regret and wonder why this perception of MPs, politicians being corrupt or they amass wealth – you can have a survey on this to rebuff this point I am making, but you realise that many MPs are really suffering after leaving office and sometimes they don’t have means of paying for their own medical bills,” he emphasised.
Touching on parliamentary issues, the Effutu MP says the drama that characterises some of the debates on the floor is only for the cameras.
“Let me reveal some secret; when you see MPs at each other’s throats, don’t be misled. Perhaps it may be for the optics,” he disclosed.
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He also noted that “sometimes a point that a member of one side may not want to make, he would want to pass it on to a colleague on the other side to still make it on the floor.”