Members of Parliament for Mpraeso and North Tongu, Davies Ansah Opoku and Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, got into a heated argument in parliament on November 8, 2023.
Divergent opinions on how to provide aid to the impacted people following the Akosombo Dam spill gave rise to the contentious debate.
The main point of contention between the two MPs was whether or not the government had sent relief supplies to the MP for North Tongu and other impacted MPs.
Davies Opoku maintained that he had gotten such materials, notwithstanding Okudzeto’s harsh skepticism of Minister of Energy Dr. Matthew Opoku Prempeh, who claimed that MPs had received release items from the Volta River Authority (VRA).
Dr. Matthew Opuku Prempeh, the minister of energy, appeared before parliament to provide an update on the catastrophe that resulted from the Akosombo and Kpong dams spilling.
Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa responded to the Energy Minister’s comments about the dam spillage by accusing the minister of spreading false information about the Akosombo dam.
“Another falsehood is that VRA is sharing relief items and that Members of Parliament have received their share. When? Which Members of Parliament have received shares of relief items? And such a dangerous statement for our constituents to come after us. As I speak as a Member of Parliament for North Tongu, the most affected constituency, no VRA official has given me relief items—not a grain of rice, not a bottle of oil. No Member of Parliament,’’ he noted during his submission, which was monitored by 1Family Radio.
Speaking immediately after Okudzeto, the MP for Mpareaso countered that the minority had given an indication that the current government was apathetic.
He cited the North Tongu MP’s Facebook post about the finance minister’s visit to the area, in which the MP indicated purchasing items.
“And he received items. He was the person leading the charge. And so to now make the claim that VRA has not done anything for me is falsehood,’’ he asserted.
He further emphasized that it would be unfair to imply that the government had not taken any action because the Minister of Education had visited the constituency and donated materials that came from the government.
Samuel Okudzeto defended himself as soon as the Mpraeso MP brought up the finance minister’s visit. The North Tongue MP claimed, when given the opportunity, that despite the finance minister’s visit to the area, he had received nothing from him. He called Davies Ansah Opkoku’s claim a flagrant fabrication.
“Mr. Speaker, it is important. I have not received anything from the Finance Minister. I have not. The minister for finance visited my constituency, but I have not received anything from him. This is a house of records. I will not accept you lying to me. These are blatant lies,’’ he fumed.