Parliament’s Privileges Committee meets today over Ken Agyapong’s ‘beat the hell out of him” threat on journalist

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The Privileges Committee of Parliament will later today, Tuesday, July 27, 2021, convene a meeting over alleged threats made by the Member of Parliament for Assin Central, Kennedy Agyapong against a journalist.

The Committee is to determine whether his comment that Luv FM’s Erastus Asare Donkor should be beaten brings the image of the House of Legislature into disrepute.

The Speaker of Parliament Alban Bagbin referred the MP to the Privileges Committee after Tamale North MP Alhassan Suhuyini moved a motion for the Assin Central lawmaker to be referred to the Committee over what he calls inciteful comments against the Multimedia Journalist.

The NET2 TV owner, on the same station, had allegedly called for ‘serious’ beating of Erastus Asare Donkor. He also threatened in a live telecast that if he (Honourable Agyapong) “were the president of Ghana, he would have ensured that Erastus Asare Donkor is beaten mercilessly”.

Moving the motion, Mr Suhuyini said “order 78A reads ‘unless any order otherwise provides, notice shall be given of any motion which is proposed to make except the following: a motion relating to contempt of parliament.’ Mr Speaker, I rise on this motion to pray you to exercise your powers under order 27 which also reads ‘notwithstanding anything contained in these orders, Mr Speaker may refer any questions of privilege to the Committee of Privileges for examination, investigation, and report.’”

He went on “I, therefore, call on you to exercise your powers under Order 27 to refer Hon Kennedy Ohene Agyapong whose acts and conducts continue to offend the dignity of Parliament and bring it into disrepute as captured under order 30(2).”

The Speaker referring Mr Agyapong to the priveledges committee said “the House’s attention is drawn to the conduct of one of our members and under Order 27, which I want to quote says “notwithstanding anything contained in these orders, Speaker may refer any question of privilege to the committee of priveledges for examination, investigation, and report.”

“In spite of the word notwithstanding, the speaker in giving his discretion may request any question of Privileges. I think that’s why the honorable member is seeking my intervention to refer the matter to the privileges committee.”

He added “this is my first time hearing this matter. As it is now, I am compelled to refer it to the priveledges committee. It’s a matter the priveledges committee will have to go into and then report to the House and it is for the house to decide whether the hon. member is contemptuous of the House.”

“In the circumstance, I direct that this matter be directed to the committee of privileges for investigation and report, I so direct.”

Meanwhile, the Multimedia Group has filed a formal complaint against the MP for threatening the life of the journalist.

In the letter, dated July 13, 2021, addressed to the Deputy Regional Commander, Ashanti Region, the media group demanded security protection for Erastus Asare Donkor.

It also called for a thorough investigation into the threats issued by the legislator.

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