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NDC REJECTS MAHAMA FRIENDS

Politics

In the ongoing National Democratic Congress regional executive elections, where former MPs, ministers, metropolitan, municipal and district chief executives and other state appointees are contesting ordinary cadres for regional slots, alongside traditional chiefs, it was again largely ex-President John Dramani Mahama’s men still holding office as regional executive who went home bruised and battered over the weekend.

In the ongoing National Democratic Congress regional executive elections, where former MPs, ministers, metropolitan, municipal and district chief executives and other state appointees are contesting ordinary cadres for regional slots, alongside traditional chiefs, it was again largely ex-President John Dramani Mahama’s men still holding office as regional executive who went home bruised and battered over the weekend.

 

In addition, the NDC carried out its threat to eliminate most Akans holding office, saying they could not be trusted to occupy positions of trust in the party. Consequently, most positions were won by Ewes, Northerners and Krobos.

The former MPs and appointees included the almighty former mayor of Kumasi Joseph Yammin, William K Atamudzi, a former municipal chief executive for West Akyem, and the former district chief executive for Akyemansa Tom Budu. Others were Dzifa Attivor, the former Minister for Transport, the former Central Regional Minister Aquinas Tawiah Quansah and Moses Bukari Magbemba, a former Northern Regional minister. All crashed in their attempt to secure seats at regional level.

                                                                                                       Details

In the Eastern Region, Bismark Tawiah Boateng, alias “Otafre Gya”, regional chairman of the main opposition party, was seeking re-election. He was been booted out by delegates.

Tawiah Boateng polled 281 votes, trailing the businessman John Owusu Amankra (Jowak), who won 375 votes to become the regional chairman. Basil Ahiable, a 2016 NDC parliamentary candidate aspirant in Akwatia, came third, garnering 249 votes.

The day before the election, Alhaji Sumaila Mahama, a regional chairman hopeful, had resigned to declare his support for Jowak when it became clear that Tawiah Boateng was leading in the opinion polls.

The election ran along factional lines, with Tawiah Boateng and some incumbent executives on one side and Jowak and other aspirants on the other. With the former regional chairman’s defeat, a key leader of the Agenda 50-50 team has lost the chairmanship slot.

However, Mark Oliver Kevor, Tawiah Boateng’s right-hand man, won 538 votes, beating his only contender, the former regional communications director and “superintendent” of the Jowak team, Baba Jamal Konneh, who could only manage with 365 votes. The election of Jowak as chairman and Kevor as secretary leaves both sides with representation in the top ranks of the leadership.

Earlier, in the contest for the women’s wing, Shirley Naana Osei Ampem, a close ally of Kevor’s, defeated Evelyn Korang. Though an incumbent, Korang had decided to align with the Jowak team, evidently for reasons of against the Tawiah Boateng-led regional leadership.

William K Atamudzi, a former municipal chief executive of the West Akyem Municipality, and George Mensah Akpalu polled 285 and 190 votes respectively to be elected regional first vice- and second vice-chairman, with Hackman S Kabore winning 653 votes to whip his only competitor, the former DCE for Akyemansa Tom Budu. Budu won only 260 votes.

The NDC delegates also elected Cudjoe Adukpo as deputy secretary, while David Dakudzi, a former deputy regional youth organiser, Ahmed Zakaria A Kwakwa and Richard Lartey Obibini won the deputy organiser, treasurer and deputy treasurer jobs respectively. Other winners were Darlas Ampomah E Williams, communications officer, Akore Michael Ofoe, deputy communications officer, and Alhaji Issah Sani Mohammed, zongo caucus co-ordinator.

                                                                                                    Yammin’s crash

Confusion rocked the Twebeboah Kodua Senior High School on Saturday where the NDC was holding its regional elections in the Ashanti Region.

The disturbance was triggered by an NDC regional chairman aspirant, Joseph Yammin, who stormed the grounds in the company of heavily built men who tried to force their way into the assembly hall where the election was taking place. Yammin was seen barging his way into the hall after police officers tried to stop him at the entrance, with the tacit approval of General Secretary Johnson Asiedu Nketiah.

In spite of that, the tension-packed conference saw businessman Andrew Nana Akwasi winning the hearts of delegates, instead of the blustering John Mahama man. Yammin secured only 88 votes, against Nana Akwasi’s 699.

In the lead-up to the elections, the founder of the NDC, Jerry John Rawlings, had urged delegates to elect committed executives who would serve the interests of the party. He indicated that the outcome of these conferences would go a long way in determining the direction of the NDC in years to come.

                                                                                                        Dzifa falls

Former Transport Minister Aku Dzifa Attivor failed catastrophically in her bid to lead the NDC in the Volta Region as chairperson.

Delegates voting in the elections conducted on Saturday rejected Attivor, who had been tipped to overthrow the incumbent chairman, John Kwadjo Gyapong. Gyapong was retained, winning 491 votes as against Attivor's 374 in spite of the influence of Mahama cash.

A total of 54 people filed papers to contest various regional executive positions of the National Democratic Congress in Volta. The positions of treasurer and communications officer were declared unopposed, enabling the industrialist Daniel Agboka-Dzegede, who filed for treasurer, and Kafui Agbleze, who stood for communications officer, to take up the roles.

                                                                                                 Aquinas goes down

A former regional minister, Ebenezer Kojo Tei Addo, won the Central regional chairmanship. The veteran politician and lawyer polled 299 votes to beat his closest contender, Kakra Yalley, who got 256.

Another former Central regional minister under the Mahama administration, Aquinas Tawiah Quansah, widely tipped to win the election, placed last in the three-man contest, winning only 157 votes despite the huge support he reportedly enjoyed from the outgoing chairman, Bernard Allotey Jacobs, popularly referred to us “Educated Fisherman”.

Another contest which lived up to the billing was for the secretary slot. The two front-runners – Henry Kweku Hayfron, a former municipal chief executive for Mfantseman, and ace journalist Kojo Quansah – both polled 238 votes. The tie compelled the party to fix another date for a run-off.

                                                                                                       Oly Dade

In the Greater Accra Region, however, Ade Coker lived up to the Wonder Club magic when he got the green light from delegates to continue his regional chairmanship of the NDC.

He won 319 votes, while his closest contenders, Daniel Amartey Mensah, a former MCE for LEKMA, and Emmanuel Ashie Moore, the MP for former Adentan, secured 293 and 283 votes respectively. Yahya Kundow, who was also in the race, won 107 votes.

Still in the region, the former MP for Ablekuma Central Theophilus Tetteh Chaie was voted the Greater Accra regional secretary. And with 390 votes, Anthony Nukpenu was retained as Greater Accra regional organiser.

                                                                                                    Brong-Ahafo

In the Brong-Ahafo Region, Ambassador Nyamekye Marfo was elected as regional chairman.

About 925 NDC Brong-Ahafo delegates converged on the Jubilee Park in Sunyani on Saturday to make a decision on whether to renew the mandate of three regional executives of the party at their 9th regional delegates’ conference.

The three ‒ regional chairman and former ambassador to Egypt, Kwadwo Nyamekye Marfo, regional secretary Dennis Yeboah Twumasi and regional zongo co-ordinator Alhaji Baba Amadu Gausu ‒ entered the election unopposed.

The hottest contest was over the position of regional organizer. At the end of voting, Mohammed Seidu fended off a stiff challenge to obtain 543 votes, beating Opoku Mensah Prince and Akwasi Lampo, who won 198 votes and 114 votes respectively.

The voting process was halted and nearly marred over a misunderstanding relating to the electoral register. However, a swift intervention from the election committee, representatives of the Electoral Commission, and some party bigwigs ensured that calm was restored.

The regional conference on Friday elected Hon Agnes Kusi and Fati Abubakar as women’s organiser and deputy women’s organiser and Thomas Warlanyo Tsekpo and Owusu Ababio Nkrumah as youth organiser and deputy youth organiser.

                                                                                                          Western

A former regional NDC chairman, Nana Kojo Toku, shockingly returned to defeat his successor, Big Aidoo, the incumbent, recapturing the seat he once occupied. Nana Toku lost the chairmanship to Big Aidoo in November 2014 and at that election collapsed out of shock.

Big Aidoo won 133 out of 295 votes in 2014, while Nana Toku got 126.

At the regional election on Saturday, Nana Toku won by 469 of total votes cast, against Big Aidoo’s 346.

                                                                                                        Upper West

A 48-year-old businessman, Alhaji Nasir Saani, popularly known as Bunas, won the Upper West chairmanship slot in a landslide.

Alhaji Saani, who is known as a bankroller of the NDC in the region, beat his only contender, Mathew Sungaabu, with 307 votes in the congress held at the Wa campus of the University for Development Studies. Sungaabu, the incumbent, managed to secure only 81 votes, contrary to earlier speculation that he would be retained.

Alhaji Nasir Saani, speaking after his swearing-in, thanked the delegates for the confidence they had shown in him. He pledged to work with the rank and file of the NDC in the region to win back the five constituency seats that the party lost to the governing New Patriotic Party at the last general elections.

A 38-year-old lawyer narrowly won the secretary slot with 179 votes, beating Cletus Dapilah, a former DCE for Jirapa, by just two votes.

                                                                                                       Northern Region

The chief of Tugu-Yapala in the Dagbon Traditional Area, Chief Alhaji Ibrahim Mobila, is the newly elected Northern Regional chairman of the party. In the just-ended regional elections, the 80-year-old commercial farmer beat his main contender, Godfred A Wumbei, the outgoing organiser, by 96 votes.

Alhaji Mobila, a godfather of Haruna Iddrisu, the NDC MP for Tamale Central, was taking part in the regional championship race for the third time. He was up against other NDC stalwarts who included a former Northern Regional minister, Moses Bukari Mabengba.

Alhaji Mobila’s victory came as no surprise, given his strong campaign team and his cleverly crafted message, which appealed to delegates.