Delegates Cream US Dollars, Cedis, Fridges, TV Sets, Gas Burners& Blenders From
Last Saturday’s New Patriotic Party (NPP) may
not have come off as mere parliamentary primaries,but has inadvertently revealed
the popularity of the Akufo-Addo-led New Patriotic Party (NPP) government is in
sharp decline, thus pushing out very prominent personalities out of Parliament.
As much as 30 sitting MPs, including nine
others serving as either chairmen or vice on committees in the August House,
lost their bids to retain their seats. What is more devastating is that, the
NPP bigwigs shockingly lost their seats to political neophytes largely
described as youth.
Interestingly, there were widespread
incidents of violence, buying with hard cash, including United States dollars, Ghana
cedis, blenders, TV sets, fridges, wax prints, gas burners and other goodies to
influence voting patterns in many of the constituencies. It was a like a mad
goldrush for the NPP delegates last Saturday, as votes were mortgaged to
bidders with deep pockets.
There are claims that had Majority Leader, Kyei
Mensah Osei Bonsu, Kennedy Agyapong, Ursula Owusu, Lydia Seyram Alhassan, Henry
Quartey, Joseph Osei Owusu and others not been protected by the party, they
would also have lost their seats.
But notable names such as Chairman of the
Constitutional and Legal Committee, Ben Abdallah and MP for Offinso South in
the Ashanti Region, Chairman of the Finance Committee and MP for New Juaben South,Dr
Mark Assibey Yeboah and chairman of the Interior Committee and MP for Mpraeso, Seth
Kwame Acheampong, all lost their reelection bids.
Then there was chairman of Parliament’s
Communications Committee, Fredrick Opare Ansah, Education Committee, William
Quaitoo, Government Assurance Committee, Collins Owusu Amankwah, Youth and
Sports Committee, Alex Agyekum, as well as Vice Chairman on Agriculture,
Abraham Odoom, Vice Chairman of Roads Kofi Brako, Vice Chairman on Trade and
Industry, Ato Panford.
Perhaps, it was this embarrassment that, the
leadership of Parliament on the Majority side, foresaw that they waged a strong
campaign to ensure that, very important seats and individuals, were protected
by not exposing them for contestation.
Also, there was Minister of Aviation, Kofi
Adda, who flew helicopter to his Constituency to file his nomination losing the
Navrongo Central to the Regional Minister, then the Eastern Regional Minister,
Eric Darfour, who doubles as Member of Parliament (MP) for Nkwakwa, losing, as
well as the Western North Regional Minister, Aboagye Gyedu.
ADeputy Minister of Trade and Industry,
Robert Ahomka Lindsay, was also not spared as he failed to win the Kumawu
ticket, while sacked Deputy Minister of Communication and MP for La-Dadekotopon,
Vincent Odotei Sowah, lost to one Joseph Gerald Tetteh Nyanyofio.
Vincent, a sports personality has suffered
double slap, as he was relieved of his ministerial appointment by President
Akufo-Addo and now his seat in Parliament.
Last Saturday’s contests show that, the 8th
Parliament beginning January 7, 2021, will witness a considerable number of
first term MPs on both NPP and the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC)
The likes of deputy chief staff, Francis
Assenso-Boakye, who defeated the incumbent, Okyeam Aboagye for the Bantaman
slot and others like boss of National Entrepreneurship and Innovation Programme
(NEIP) John Kumah, representing the Ejisu Constituency, MASLOC’s Stephen Amoah
aka Sticka of Nhyieaso all in the party’s stronghold of Ashanti Region as well
as Sheila Bartels, daughter of a former Minister under the erstwhile John
Kufuor administration, representing the people of Ablekuma North, booking seats
in the next Parliament.
The elections, which were held without much
attention to COVID-19 safety protocols, was marred with a lot of violence with
one Kwame Adom Appiah, an aspirants in the Effiduase Constituency of the
Ashanti Region beaten to pulp, after he allegedly tried to whisk away the
electoral album at one of the voting centers.
The lawyer was hurt during a fisticuff with state security (soldiers) after he whisked
away the electoral album for the Effiduase South RC JHS A. voting center F3510941.
He was hurt in front of the Effiduase district police station, and left with a
The lawyer, had questioned the right of the Police to arrest his agent who was
put in handcuffs, but was hit with the butt of a gun by a soldier, who was present
at the place. He was contesting the incumbent, Dr. Nana Ayew Afriyie, who
In the Sefwi Wiawso Constituency of the Western
Region, but for the swift intervention of the Rapid Response Team of the Ghana
Police and some military person, some delegates would have been injured and
murdered in a riot that broke during the acclamation of the Parliamentary
Several gun shots were fired into the air by the
security agencies to disperse these rioting groups, as party executives
undertake processes to acclaim the incumbent, Dr. Kwaku Afriyie.
Eyewitnesses say, a gang of macho-men, who were
aligned with a disappointed aspirant; Martin Bonyen, invaded the Sefwi Dwenase
Pentecost Church, where the exercise was held to disrupt the acclamation.
Some party men explained that, Martin Bonyen, was
tipped to contest the incumbent MP but was disqualified some few days leading
to this event.
Bodyguards of the MP, were caught in a brawl with
these ‘militants’ putting the entire exercise in disarray.Luckily the security
agencies managed to calm issues for the exercise to resume. No arrest was made
as the ‘invaders’ eloped when the gun shots were fired.
In the Bantama Constituency, Daniel Okyem Aboagye,
who happens to be the defeated candidate, said he suspected some manipulation
by the executives of the Constituency against him.
According to him, he did not have a copy of
the electoral album which was used for the election even though he is the
incumbent MP, this development he describes as unfair.
Speaking in an interview with Joy News, he
said he was ready to deal with that issue even though he did not state how he
was going to go about it.
now, as the incumbent MP and I have not been given a copy of the register. As I
speak to you right now, that is not fair. There is some manipulation going on.
I will deal with it when we get to the bridge.”
It was reported earlier that voting was briefly disrupted at the Bantama
Cultural Centre when an agent was prevented from casting his vote.
According to the report, the agent
representing the MP prevented the Constituency Treasurer from voting on the
grounds that his status as an official of the Foreign Affairs ministry, does
not qualify him to vote, even though his name was found in the album being used
for the election.
He adds that the situation led to a scuffle that witnessed some blows and slaps
at the polling station.
The reporter, however, indicated that
security personnel in the Constituency were quick to resolve the situation
which could have escalated, allowing the treasurer to finally cast his ballot.
Then came accusations of vote buying by
almost all candidates with many paying as much as GHc5000, while others paid in
Akim Oda Constituency, the incumbent William Agyapong Quaitoo,reportedly gave
each delegate Ghc2000 with 32-inch plasma television, while his opponent, gave
32 inches with cash amount of GHc3, 000.
Ahmed Arthur of the Okaikoi Central
Constituency,who lost the seat to one Dakoa Newman reportedly,gave GHc2000 to
each delegate, while the victor, doled out GHc1500.
Mention was made of Nana Fredua Ofori Atta, a
relative of President Akufo-Addo, sharing
some cash in his attempt to buy votes, but he abysmally failed.
In the New Juaben Constituency, reports indicate that
each delegate,bagged not less than GHC10, 000 during the primaries.
information gathered, while contender, Michael Okyere Baafi,who unseated the
incumbent splashed some GHC4, 000 to each delegate, incumbent Mark
amounts of money exclude other items given, including television sets among
others.Some Constituency executives were seen displaying their thumb-printed
ballot papers to indicate who they voted for.
The New Juaben
South Organiser, Alhaji Abubakar Alhassan aka B. Wassa, displayed his ballot
paper before putting it in the ballot box. He defended that everyone knows his
preferred candidate, so nothing wrong with him showing it.
Dome-Kwabenya Constituency in the Greater Accra Region for instance, the
incumbent Sarah Adwoa Sarfo, was given a tough competition by Ghana’s Ambassador
to India, Mike Oquaye Jnr.
who also happens to be the son of the Speaker of Parliament, Prof. Mile Aaron
Oquaye and the second time lawmaker,Adwoa Sarfo, shared money and other items,
including prints. In Okaikoi South, incumbent,Issah Fuseini reportedly doled out
some GHc 1500 and other goodies to each delegate.
MP allegedly for fear of delegates not voting for him, forced them to swear
before going to vote. His only contender journalist cum publisher of the Daily
Searchlight Newspaper, Kenneth Agyei Kuranchie,reportedly gave each of his core
delegates, table top fridge and money plus food.
of the delegates were caught on camera carrying the fridges on their heads from
the home of Mr Agyei Kuranchie,while others gleefully packed into vehicles before
returning to cast their votes.
Asenso-Boakye and Okyem Aboagye in the Bantaman Constituency, moneys and other
goodies, were shared and in the event that one aspirant heard that the other
has topped up, he quickly arranged for additional moneys to be doled out. The
MP reportedly gave out some GHc2000.
Even MPs, who went
unopposed had to pay as much as GHc1000, before delegates trooped to the venue
of the acclamation for the event.