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Professor Mike Oquaye, Speaker of Parliament

Don’t be in a hurry to name ‘Covid-19 MPs’ •Speaker warns

BY KOBINA WELSING

THE SPEAKER of Parliament, Professor Mike Oquaye, has cautioned members of the House not to be in a hurry to name MPs who have contracted the Covid-19.

According to the Speaker, Parliamentarians should allow MPs who have contracted the deadly virus to put their status out themselves.

“You cannot unilaterally put into the public realm that a person is positive, let everybody know this, let every lady and gentleman, every person know this in this Republic, and it has been well-stated in this Honourable House. You cannot unilaterally put in the public realm that a person is positive,” the Speaker said on the floor of Parliament.

He added, “It is only for an individual to voluntarily put it in the public realm and we are all learning from this as decent and honourable people and this Honourable House will follow that line of the example, that is our public duty.

“If you allow me to quote from what Honourable Dr Oko Boye, he said: ‘We should show that we are not in a hurry to disclose names worthy of a headline and it is my view that such sensationalism, what is going on, must stop because they rather encourage stigmatization. When you sensationalise news, you encourage stigmatization,” he added.

The Speaker’s caution comes after Starrfm.com.gh on Tuesday reported that two MPs and 13 parliamentary staff members had tested positive for Covid-19 after they underwent voluntary testing.

The Director of Public Affairs, Kate Addo, later denied the reports that some MPs and staff members had contracted the virus.

However, on Wednesday (yesterday), Asawase lawmaker Muntaka Mubarak confirmed the information, saying that two of their MPs had tested positive.

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