The governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) will today hold parliamentary primaries to elect parliamentary candidates in 101 constituencies for the upcoming 2020 parliamentary election.
In all, 308 aspirants including 47 women are in contention to represent the party in those constituencies.
The aspirants would be elected or acclaimed by 102,000 delegates of the party spread across constituencies.
For all the 67 constituencies which have unopposed candidates, the party directed that constituency delegates converge at the Electoral Area or Zonal Level for candidates to address them.
Issues which threatened the exercises at three constituencies, Kwadaso, Dormaa and Gushegu, have been resolved with Dormaa and Gushegu aspirants contesting unopposed while the exercise will be held at Kwadaso on June 24.
Among the unopposed aspirants are Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, Suame, Ambrose Dery, Nandom, Joe Ghartey, Essikado-Ketan, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, Ofoase-Ayirebi, Atta Akyea, Abuakwa South, Kwesi Amoako-Atta, Atiwa West, Abena Osei Asare, Atiwa East, Nana Ama Dokua Asiamah-Adjei, Akuapem North, Kennedy Osei Nyarko, Akim Swedru, Osei Frimpong, Abirem, Daniel Botwe, Okere, Joseph Tetteh, Upper Manya Krobo and Bryan Acheampong, Abetifi.
John Boadu, the General Secretary of NPP, in an earlier briefing, said the exercise would be organised in strict adherence to the coronavirus protocols with focus on social distancing, hand washing, nose masks wearing, among others, to protect the delegates from the deadly disease.
The Director of Public Affairs of the Ghana Police Service, Superintendent Sheila Abeyie-Buckman, told the Ghanaian Times that all regional commands would be responsible for the deployment of police personnel to ensure law and order throughout the electoral process.
The commands, she noted, were adequately notified and have accordingly made arrangement to offer security services during the exercise today.
Adequate preparations has also been made to curtail security breaches at identified hotspots in constituencies where voting was expected to take place, she said, adding that the “police will not entertain acts that will injure the country’s peace.”
Among the keenly contested slots are Dome-Kwabenya where incumbent Sarah Adwoa Safo is in a fierce competition with Mike Ocquaye Junior as well as Old Tafo-Pankrono constituency in the Ashanti Region where six contestants are in the race to succeed Dr Akoto Osei who did not seek re-election after serving 16 years in Parliament.
Of the six aspirants, the only female, Dr Serwaa Donkor, aims at becoming the first female parliamentarian to emerge from the constituency.
Dr Emmanuel Obeng, Chief Executive Officer of Trinity Hospital, Vincent Assafuah, Public Relations Officer at the Ministry of Education, Inusah Lansah, Operations Manager of the Ashanti Region branch of the State Transport Company, Archibald Ntiri-Acquah, an administrator at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital and Prince Odeneho Oppong, a businessman, who are all in the race, have braced up for the family contest.
In the Greater Accra Region, 49 candidates will battle it out in 20 constituencies. Of the number, 13 will be keenly contested while, the remaining seven constituencies will have their candidates go unopposed.
Among the unopposed aspirants are; Ursula Owusu-Ekuful, Ablekuma West, Henry Quartey, Ayawaso Central, and Bernard Okoe-Boye, Ledzokuku, Abu-Bakar Saddique Boniface, Madina, Patrick Boamah, Okaikwei Central, Moses Anim, Trobu and Tina Mensah, Weija-Gbawe.
David O. Yarboi-Tetteh, reports from Cape Coast that five females out of 42 candidates are contesting 19 parliamentary tickets in the Central Region.
Among them are Barbara Ayisi, incumbent MP of Cape Coast North, who would be facing stiff opposition from three other candidates namely; Lawrence Ampah, Joseph Baidoo and Philip Longdon and George Andah, MP for Awutu Senya West who would face Joseph Aidoo for the party’s slot.
Samuel Akapule, reports from Bolgatanga that the Deputy Regional Secretary, Elvis Figo, told the Ghanaian Times the elections would be conducted in three constituencies Tempani, Navrongo Central and Zebilla.
In the Tempane Constituency, the incumbent Member of Parliament and Deputy Attorney General, Joseph Kpemka, is going unopposed.
The Navrongo seat is being contested by Joseph Kofi Adda, the current MP and Minister of Aviation and Tangoba Abayage, the Upper East Regional Minister.
In the Zebilla Constituency, Frank Fuseini Adongo, the incumbent Member of Parliament, who doubles as the Deputy Upper East Regional Minister would be contested by Dr John Krugu, former National Deputy Organizer of the NPP.
From Sunyani, Daniel Dzirasah report that the constituencies to be contested in the Ahafo, Bono East and Bono regions are Techiman North, Techiman South, Atetebubu Amanting, Nkoranza South, Nkoranza North, Tano North, Tano South, Asutifi North, Asunafo South.
Others are Berekum East, Berekum West, Dormaa Central, Dormaa West and Jaman South. The rest are Jaman North, Sunyani East, Sunyani West, Tain and Wenchi.
From Koforidua , Ama Tekyiwaa Ampadu Agyeman report that the competition will be fierce at Abuakwa North Constituency where Kofi Obeng Mensah, Kay Amoah Jnr, and Nana Serwaa Acheampong would face off against incumbent Gifty Ampofo for the party’s slot.
Other constituencies including Nkawkaw, Akuapem South, Suhum, Akim Oda, New Juaben South, New Juaben North, Nsawam, Lower West Akyem, Kade, Ayensuano, Akwatia, Fanteakwa South, Akim and Achease Mpreaso would see fierce competition.
However, five of the constituencies including Nkawkaw, Nsawam, Akuapem South, Akim Oda and New Juaben South have been identified as hotspots.
From Wa, Lydia Darlington Forfjour, report that 12 candidates are contesting for the five incumbent seats of the party in the Upper West Region
The all-male candidates would be contesting in the Lawra, Nandom, Wa East as well as Sissala East and West Constituencies, respectively.
In the Lawra Constituency, Anthony Karbo would lock horns with Bilson Dontaa while Ridwan Dauda, the incumbent MP for Sissala East Constituency would battle it out with Issahaku Chinnia.
Sissala West’s Representative in Parliament, Patrick Al-Hassan Adama would be keenly contested by a former District Chief Executive for the area, Salifu Baluwie and the party’s Regional Youth Organiser, Yuri Tie John Bosco.
Yakubu Sorekuon would go against Godfrey Tangu who is the incumbent MP for the Wa East Constituency, together with two others, Yakubu Salifu and Baduong Bashirudeen.
Clement Adzei Boye, reports from Takoradi that due to six current aspirants going unopposed, seven out of 13 constituencies in the Western Region would vote to elect their parliamentary candidates.
The competition would be keenly contested at Effia, Kwesimintsim, Ahanta West, Mpoho, Amenfi East and Shama constituencies.
He urged delegates to conduct their activities with decorum, explaining that “the contest is about competition of ideas.”
From Kumasi , Kingsley E. Hope reports that 100 aspirants have been okayed to contest in the primaries in all the constituencies of the Ashanti Region with 16 going unopposed.
Among them are Andy Appiah-Kubi and Kwadwo Agyemang, who are in the running at Asante Akim North, five contestants will face off at Asante Akim South, Asante Akim Central would see two contestants, Kwame Anyimadu-Antwi and Kofi Nkansah while at the Atwima Kwawoma, Nana Owusu Acheampong, Kofi Amankwah-Manu and Kojo Appiah-Kubi would battle it out for the party’s ticket.
BY WINSTON TAMAKLOE