Politics of Thursday, 10 December 2015
A total of 16 out of the 30 metropolitan, municipal and district chief executives in the Ashanti Region have secured the nod of their constituents to represent the National Democratic Congress in the next parliamentary election.
While some of them went unopposed, others had to shrug off stiff opposition from other contenders to win the slots to represent the party next year.
Notable among those who failed to win their primaries were the Ashanti Regional Minister, Mr Peter Anarfi Mensah, who was beaten by the incumbent Member of Parliament for Ahafo Ano North, and the popular Tweaa DCE, Gabriel Barimah, who could not capitalise on his fame to win the slot.
The renominated Municipal Chief Executive for Ejisu-Juaben, Kwaku Afrifa Yamoah Ponkoh, also failed in his attempt to contest the Ejisu seat on the ticket of the party. He was beaten by the Regional Deputy Women’s Organiser, Gloria Huze.
Some government appointees also managed to win the slots in their respective constituencies. They include the Deputy Minister for Gender and Social Protection, Mr John Alexander Ackom at Obuasi West, the Deputy Chief of Staff, Johnny Osei Kofi who stood unopposed at the Oforikrom Constituency, and the former Ashanti Regional Minister now Managing Director of State Housing Company, Samuel Sarpong for the Nhyiaeso Constituency. The Deputy Minister for Water Resources, Works and Housing, Samuel Yaw Adusei, also won the approval of the party members to contest the Bantama seat again.
The district chief executives who secured the parliamentary candidate slot of the NDC were Kaakyire Oppong Kyekyeku for Afigya Kwabre South; Degraft Forkuo for Asante; Kwabena Nkrumah for Atwima Kwanwoma; Nana Asare Bediako for Atwima Nwabiagya South; Ms Mary Jantuah for Bekwai; Kwame Adarkwa for Bosome Freho and Veronica Antwi Adjei for Bosomtwe.
The rest are Alhaji Mohammed Bawa Braimah for Ejura Sekyedumase; Adam Iddissah for Kwabre East; Mohammed Kojo Abuaso for Mampong; Alexander Kwame Bonsu for Manso Nkwanta; Akuoko Frimpong for Nsuta Kwamang-Beposo; Richard Ofori Agyeman Boadi for Obuasi East; Emmanuel Dede for Odotobiri and Samuel Appiah Kubi for Offinso North.
Currently, the party has only four out of the 47 constituencies in the region and all the sitting Members of Parliament retained their slots to contest the next election.
They are Ernest Kofi Yarkah for New Edubiase; Alhaji Muntakar Mubarak for Asawase who went unopposed, Kwasi Adusei for Ahafo Ano North and Alex Adomako for Sekyere Afram Plains.
In all, a total of 119,496 party members took part in the primaries to elect the parliamentary candidate and to also endorse the candidature of the President, thus making it an average of 2,540 voters per constituency.
While a total of 1,454 rejected votes were recorded for the parliamentary primaries throughout the whole region, that of the presidential recorded a total of 1,855.
A total of 112,454, representing 94.11 per cent of party members in the region, voted yes to endorse the candidature of the President while 5,187, making 4.34 per cent, voted against his candidature.
The Ejura Sekyedumase Constituency recorded the highest number of voters. A total of 8,756 voters turned out to cast their ballots while the Manhyia South Constituency recorded the lowest number of voters. A total of 433 party members turned out to vote.
This could be due to the fact that the candidate there went unopposed and as per the party rules, there should not have been any election but just acclamation.
Voters who turned out were to endorse the candidature of President Mahama. Even out of this number, five people voted ‘NO’.