By Femi Ogunshola
Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rep. Femi Gbajabiamila, and the new Speaker of the Ghanaian Parliament, Mr Albert Bagbin, have agreed to strengthen parliamentary relations.
This is in a bid to find lasting solutions to challenges such as the trade dispute involving some Nigerian traders in Ghana.
The two speakers reached out to each other during a zoom meeting on Friday.
Gbajabiamila told his counterpart that the two countries should continue to explore the avenue of parliamentary diplomacy in addressing shared challenges.
He added that there was much both countries could learn from one another, while introducing the project he initiated with five other African Speakers.
The projects is the Conference of Speakers of African Parliaments (CoSAP), which started in 2020 and had advocated for debt relief.
He further stated that this year, African Speakers and Heads of Parliaments were expected to gather in Abuja to explore how they could work together to tackle collective challenges.
Gbajabiamila congratulated the newly elected Ghanaian Speaker for his success at the recent polls.
He said while he worked very closely with the predecessor, he looked forward to doing the same with Bagbin in continuation of the age-old tradition of solidarity between both nations.
“I look forward to working with you. There are a lot of issues for both our countries, that, I think through Parliamentary Diplomacy and backchannel discussions, we can resolve for the people of both countries.
“I’m sure you are aware of a couple of them, including the relationship between Ghana and Nigeria in terms of our traders and residents over there and yours over here too.
” I think the onus rests upon both of us to try and resolve whatever issues there are. We started on this trajectory last year with the former speaker and we made very significant inroads and headway.”
On his part, Bagbin said he welcomed the idea of having a better relationship with the Nigerian Parliament and that he was ready to reciprocate the Nigerian Speaker’s visit so that they would discuss issues.
He also applauded Gbajabiamila for coming up with the idea of CoSAP, which he described as a noble project.
The two Speakers agreed to meet in Abuja before the first half of this year to continue with the ongoing political consultations.(NAN)