Deputy Health Minister, Okoe Boye caught staking “banker-to-banker” lotto

Okoe Boye at Lotto Kiosk Okoe Boye at Lotto Kiosk

Many have, complained about economic conditions in the country describing it as harsh and praying for a change, but to see a Member of Parliament (MP) who double as Deputy Minister for Health, staking lotto and hoping to make some money with a win, was not anticipated.

The people of Ledzokuku Constituency in the Greater Accra Region, yesterday, woke up to pictures of their MP, Dr Bernard Okoe Boye, in front of a lotto kiosk believed to be in Teshie, staking lotto.

It appeared to many that the realities of the economy, has not only affected poor Ghanaians who are either jobless or needed some extra cash to augment what they earn every month, but appointees of President Nana Akufo-Addo, are also feeling the pinch despite shouting; 4-More-4-Nana-2-Do-More", the ruling New Patriotic Party's (NPP) 2020 campaign tag line.

In the picture making the rounds on social media, the young medical doctor, was seen in front of the lotto kiosk with what appears to be money meant to pay the lotto writer, whilst his eyes were firmed fixed on what is called "winning numbers", displayed on the side of the kiosk in chalk.

While, some have said the deputy minister, may actually be staking lotto, others thought he was only there interacting with the two individuals in the kiosk as part of his "door to door campaign" in the Ledzokuku constituency where the Parliamentary Candidate of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), Ben Ayiku Narh has put him under a state of emergency.

Meanwhile, some constituents, have hailed the MP's campaign strategy, especially at this time of COVID-19 pandemic. But others are unimpressed and have also lashed out at him insisting he was only doing it for optical value; "for the cameras".

According to his accusers, the MP, over the four years, has performed abysmally, always busying himself with radio and television programmes, leaving the constituents to their fate.

They say this attempt to woo constituents as the December elections approaches, will yield no result as their minds have already been made.

Ledzokuku, stretches from Teshie Military camp, to the Teshie town, GRADE Estates, the Regimanuel Gray Estates to a vast part of the Spintex Road. But off all these, the densely populated Teshie town, decides who makes it to parliament as a candidate. However, Teshie roads are bad, there is irregular water supply to homes and rising poverty among others.

Seeing Dr Oko's picture, some could not resist the temptation to comments, and did so with various views.

While, some asked him to drop the "two sure" members for them to also stake, others jokingly said they thought he had long stopped staking lotto, as they used to engage in it with him.

This is however, not the first time a Ghanaian politician has tried to use very unusual method of clamouring for votes.

Ex-President Jerry John Rawlings once picked and ate the popular "Koose" at a roadside, and was accused of stealing it, during a campaign tour of the Brong Ahafo, in a publication by the defunct Independent Newspaper the edited by Egbert Faibille Jnr, now Chief Executive Officer of the Petroleum Commission.

The then NPP presidential candidate Nana Akufo-Addo prior to his 2016 victory, was often seen eating boiled with Kontomire stew (cocoyam leaves) and Kenkey with fried fish publicly with party enthusiasts.

There are pictures of him drinking sachet water and playing cards with people to portray himself as a commoner having been tagged elitist.

Skufo-Addo's running mate, now Vice President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, was also spotted in the north, sweating and pounding fufu with some members of his delegation during a campaign tour up north ahead of the 2012 polls. His wife, Samira, was also seen sweeping the Nima Market.

The likes of the MP for Ablekuma Central, Dr Alfred Okoe Vanderpujie, was also seen plaiting hair and making banku, respectively.

Similar negative and positive comments greeted their actions.

Source: The Herald