Due to the boycott by all opposition parties in 1992, the 1st Parliament of Ghana’s 4th Republic had only NDC members (189) and a handful of NCP (8) and EGLE party members (who were already in alliance with the NDC) with two Independent Members (Madam Hawa Yakubu Ogede and John Achuliwor). Effectively therefore, that Parliament was a one-party one.

The 1996 Elections followed which saw the NPP obtaining 61 of the 200 seats. At its maiden sitting to elect the Speaker and prepare for the swearing in of Jerry John Rawlings as President for the second term, Hon. J.H. Mensah as the newly elected Minority Leader gave a fiery speech. He argued that the President of the USA is sworn in Parliament and before Parliament. In the UK, the Prime Minister is sworn in Parliament and before Parliament. Being the two countries whose democracy we were following, he argued that Ghana had no option than to follow suit backing it with Constitutional clauses. Thus, the Minority will not countenance the pre-planned arrangement for the President to be sworn at a state function at the Independence Square.

The Majority Leader (J.H. Owusu-Acheampong) and his Majority could not muster enough argument to counter so eventually, the Minority won. The swearing-in took place at Independence Square in any case, but held as a parliamentary sitting with all the Standing Orders prevailing. That set the stage for a very exciting second phase of J.H. Mensah as an MP for Sunyani East. Throughout his stay in Parliament up until 2008, he was a sight to behold – great orator with deep insights into constitutional and parliamentary democracy as well as governance matters.

Hon. J.H. Mensah had decades before worked on the 7-Year Development Plan under the Nkrumah government, served as the MP for Sunyani and Minister of Finance in the 2nd Republic. Politically, he was a founding member of both the Progress Party of the 2nd Republic, Popular Front Party of the 3rd Republic and the New Patriotic Party of the 4th Republic.He has indeed paid his dues in full to Ghana and all of us must emulate his example.

May his soul rest in perfect peace.

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My dear friend,
"I am of the opinion that my life belongs to the whole community and as long as I live, it is my privilege to do for it whatever I can. I want to be thoroughly used up when I die, for the harder I work the more I live." – George Bernard Shaw
Over the last couple of years, I’ve dedicated a bit of my time to join the struggle of helping to raise the younger generation. This has been to ensure that they are well positioned to take over the reins of this country and improve on its lot.
Being a committed Christian, I have for the better part of my adult life been inspired by the philosophy, ‘Omnibus Omnia Factus Sum’, a Latin phrase adopted from the first letter of Paul to the Corinthians 9:22 where he wrote that he became all things to all men that he might save some by all means.
I have therefore, utilized all manner of approaches to help influence positive change in the attitude and orientation of our people for the overall purpose of nation building. To this, I welcome you to my blog. Enjoy my take on issues espoused through the scripts as well as my brief thoughts on issues as they play out daily and news stories on various endeavors that I may play a part in.
Feed back is always critical for improvement and I would thus appeal to you to always leave a note after reading any piece on this blog.
Welcome and enjoy browsing the pages.
Eric Atta-Sonno

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