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A Chaotic Start to Ghana’s Parliament Seating after a Disputed Poll

Ghanaian soldiers intervened overnight to quell a clash between opposing parties in parliament ahead of the body’s swearing-in set for Thursday, witnesses said. Chaotic scenes erupted after a governing party deputy tried to seize the ballot box during the vote for parliament speaker. The ensuing clash lasted several hours until the army stepped in, with national television broadcasting the drama live. The new parliament will be virtually split down the middle between the two main parties, posing the risk of gridlock with key issues on the agenda including how to turn around an economy hard hit by the coronavirus pandemic. Footage from the overnight confrontation in parliament showed some of the legislators shouting and brawling with rivals. The NPP won 137 seats in the 275-member parliament, after shedding 32 in the election, leaving it equal to the 137 held by the NDC. A lone independent won the remaining seat. On Wednesday, an NDC MP was suspended on legal grounds because he had dual nationality, which brought the opposition’s ranks down to 136.