The proposed 450-seat parliament chamber seems to have drawn varied opinions and views from both the Majority and the Minority Members of Parliament (MPs).
The Majority believes that the expansion of the chamber will cater for future increase in the number of MPs and also curb congestion.
The Minority meanwhile is of the view that the construction of the chamber is needless and a clear misplaced priority since the nation is confronted with more pressing issues such as poor roads and challenging health care.
Majority Leader Osei Kyei Mensah Bonsu argues that there are more than 60 non-MPs who occasionally are expected to be in the chamber and sometimes District Chiefs Executives (DCEs) also come to the chamber for different assignment and a new chamber will be able to house all these individuals without congestion. He also added that if all 275 Members of Parliament are present, together with the DCEs and non-MPS some will have to stand to make way for others which is not the best.
Meanwhile, Member of Parliament for North Tongu Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa who doubles as the Ranking Member on the Foreign Affairs Committee and also a Minority member says the proposed chamber is needless. In a Facebook post, he said “I do not think Parliament needs a new chamber complex.
“If the views of all Members of Parliament were sought, I would have suggested we used some of those resources to beef up research staff of MPs who must be paid well in order to attract a good calibre and construct simple MP offices across the country to improve interactions with constituents as we have in other jurisdictions, especially at a time most constituents say they do not get to see their MPs. Respectfully, I do hope Mr Speaker will take a second look at this”.
Parliament is considering building a new ultramodern chamber and the Parliamentary Service Board say they have already received the architectural model for the new chamber from renowned Ghanaian architect David Frank Adjaye, the same designer of the National Cathedral.
The new chamber is to house other facilities, including diplomatic offices, a library, a museum, a church, a mosque, eateries, press conference rooms, galleries, a car park, an upper gallery garden, a post office and other facilities to complete the Parliamentary Enclave.