The One Unique Privilege Bagbin Has Never Enjoyed As Speaker In The 8th Parliament

Alban Bagbin, the current Speaker of Ghana's Parliament, holds a significant position in the country's governance.

However, there's one privilege he has never experienced due to a unique circumstance.

In Ghana, if both the president and vice president are unable to perform their duties, the Speaker of Parliament steps in as the acting president.

This is a crucial responsibility outlined in Article 60(11) of the 1992 Constitution.

Article 60(11) of the 1992 Constitution stipulates that: "Where the President and the Vice President are both unable to perform the functions of the President, the Speaker of Parliament shall perform those functions until the President or the Vice-President is able to perform those functions or a new President assumes office, as the case may be.”

But despite being the Speaker since January 2021, Bagbin has never had the chance to serve as acting president.


This is because there has not been any instance where both the president and the vice have been out of the country.

Also, traditionally, the Speakers of Parliament in Ghana come from the ruling party.

This affiliation ensures that when the need arises, the Speaker can seamlessly assume the role of acting president.

However, Bagbin's situation is different. He is the first Speaker in Ghana's history to come from the opposition party.

Consequently, he hasn't been able to enjoy this particular privilege that his predecessors did.

In contrast, Bagbin's predecessor, Professor Aaron Mike Oquaye, who served as Speaker during the 7th parliament, had several opportunities to act as president when both the president and vice president were unable to perform their duties. This privilege stemmed from his political affiliation with the ruling party.

Bagbin's journey to becoming Speaker was marked by an intense election. He emerged victorious in January 2021, winning the support of 138 members of parliament.

His opponent, Prof. Aaron Mike Oquaye, garnered 136 votes. This victory was historic, but it also highlighted the unique political landscape in which Bagbin operates.

Despite not having the chance to serve as acting president, Bagbin has had a distinguished career in politics and law.

Born on September 24, 1957, in Sombo, Upper West Region, Bagbin has been a member of parliament since 1993, making him the longest-serving MP in Ghana's history.

Over the years, he has held various positions in parliament, including Majority Leader and Chairman of the Public Accounts Committee.

Bagbin's contributions to Ghana's governance are very significant, but the one privilege he never enjoyed serves as a testament to the political dynamics in the country.