The Majority Leader and Minister of Parliamentary Affairs, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, has stated that the mass defeat of some experienced Members of Parliament (MPs) in the New Patriotic Party’s recent primaries is a setback to the governing party.
“The longer one stays in Parliament, the better a material he or she becomes,” he said in an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA) at Suame, after an acclamation to confirm him as the parliamentary candidate for the constituency.
The NPP lost about 40 incumbent MPs in last Saturday’s primaries to choose parliamentary candidates for the December general elections.
Some of the casualties had served only one term in office.
The Majority Leader described the situation as worrying, and hoped that it would improve to help strengthen the country’s democratic dispensation.
Bigwigs chairing notable committees in Parliament who succumbed to new entrants include Mr Ben Abdallah, MP for Offinso-South and Chairman of Parliament’s Legal Affairs Committee, and Mr Collins Owusu-Amankwaah, MP for Manhyia North and Chairman of Parliament’s Government Assurances Committee.
Others are Dr Mark Assibey Yeboah, MP for New Juaben South and Chairman of Parliament’s Finance Committee; Mr Alex Agyekum, MP for Mpohor and Chairman of Parliament’s Youth and Sports Committee; Mr William Agyapong Quaittoo, MP for Akyem Oda and Chairman of Education Committee; and Mr Daniel Okyem Aboagye, MP for Bantama and a Government’s Spokesperson on Finance.
Mr Kwabena Owusu Aduomi, MP for Ejisu and Deputy Minister of Roads and Highways, as well as Mr Joseph Kofi Adda, MP for Navrongo Central and Minister of Aviation, all lost their chances to represent their people in the next Parliament.
Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, who has represented his constituency in the last 24 years under the Seventh Parliament of the Republic of Ghana, was, however, optimistic about the NPP’s victory in the December elections.
“In spite of this development, we are still poised for victory,” he stated, saying the onus lies on all NPP activists to work harder than before.
The Majority Leader advised the losing candidates to continue to offer their support towards the party’s cause.