The Electoral Commission last week Friday, February 12, 2021, conducted elections for new regional representatives to the Council of State.
The exercise, enshrined in Paragraph (C) of Clause 2 of Article 89 of the 1992 constitution, resulted in 102 candidates from 16 regions filing to contest the elections which were held at all regional capitals across the country.
With the exception of the Western region which failed to elect a representative, the likes of Enoch Teye Mensah, former NDC Member of Parliament for Ningo-Prampram, and 60-year old business executive Paa Kofi Ansong were unanimously elected to represent the Greater Accra and Eastern regions respectively.
The former Ningo-Prampram MP went against six other candidates for the Greater Accra regional representation of the Council.
The other competitors were Nii Kotei Dzani, who is the immediate past member, Michael Kofi Mensah, Wilbeck Ato Sefah, John Mantse Akwetey, Nene Konor Atiapah III and Charles Andrew Parker-Allotey.
Though some of the contestants had to withdraw from the race prior to the conduct of the elections for various reasons, E.T Mensah still emerged winner, amassing all votes cast.
ET Mensah served as MP for Ningo Prampram for almost a decade. He had also been a Minister of Education. Among other things, he also served as the Chief Executive of the Accra Metropolitan Assembly and the Minority Chief Whip in Parliament.
From the Eastern region, Daily Statesman reporter Mudasiru Abdul Yakeen reports that 60-year-old business executive Paa Kofi Ansong was unanimously elected as the Council of State member for the region after being endorsed by all the 66 delegates.
Mr Ansong contested against Ernest Amemakuse Mawufemor, a 35-year-old entrepreneur, and James Amanor Ossom, a 55-year-old mechanical engineer.
Paa Kofi Ansong was an appointed member of the immediate past Council of State in President Akufo-Addo’s first term.
Our reporter in the Northern region, Hamza Lansah Lolly, also reports that former Manager of Stanbic Bank Chief Alhassan Andani failed to get the nod to represent the region as its representative on the Council of State.
Moreover, the immediate past MP for Kumbungu Constituency, Ras Mubarak, also failed to garner a single vote in the election.
The Chief of Zung, Zunglana Mahmoud Tahiru, was elected as the Northern Region’s representative on the Council of State. The 61-year-old Certified Accountant polled 23 votes out of the 32 votes cast.
Two of the contestants, Mahamoud Sadiq and Abubakari Sadiq, pulled out of the race before the election. After being declared the winner, Naa Mahmoud Tahiru was consequently sworn in by Justice Richard Mac Kogyapwah of the Tamale High Court.
Start of new dawn
Naa Mahmoud Tahiru in his victory speech said he was overwhelmed by the number of votes he got from the delegates, and thanked them for the confidence reposed in him.
“What has happened today, it is not the victory for Zunglana; it is a victory for Dagbon. I want to thank my fellow contestants. Also want to thank the Assembly men and the PMs that voted.
“They were just carrying out a constitution mandate and you rightly or so, voted for Dagbon and Northern Region and not necessarily Zunglana. I am very grateful and you will hear more of us as we progress,” he said.
The outgoing Northern Regional Minister, Salifu Saeed, thanked the delegates for the election, and urged the people of Dagbon to support the newly elected Council of State member to succeed.
Upper East Region
The paramount chief of the Talensi Traditional Area, Tong-Raan Kugbilsong Nalebegtang, retained his position as the Council of State member representative for the Upper East Region.
Tong-Raan Kugbilsong Nanlebegtang polled 19 votes out of 30 valid votes cast to beat his main contender, the paramount chief of the Chiana traditional area and president of the Upper East Regional House of Chiefs, Ditundini Adial Thomas-More.
At the end of polls, Naba Ditundini Adial Thomas-More polled six votes while Dr Akamboe Ayirebania polled five votes.
The other two, a teacher and presiding member for the Kassena-Nankana West Assembly, Mr Akurugu Eric Aligiyalah, and a former NPP Regional Organiser, Mr Yaw Mort, had no vote.
The Upper East Regional Director of the Electoral Commission, William Obeng Adarkwa, declared Tong-Raan Kugbilsong Nanlebegtang duly elected Council of State representative for the region.
Tong-Raan Kugbilsong Nanlebegtang in a post victory speech called for the support of all and sundry to enable him to lobby and bring the needed development to the Upper East Region.
“My re-election as the Upper East Regional Council of State member has re-energized me the more and that I will offer whatever assistance or role I need to play to enhance the growth of the Upper East Region,” he said.
From the Western region, our regional correspondent, Yaaba Yamikeh, reports that the region failed to elect a representative to the Council of State after none of the five contestants secured majority of the 28 votes cast.
This was after Eunice Jacqueline Buah, 56, the incumbent, and Nana Ntori-Bonkyi Akomeah, 53 , both polled 14 votes each, resulting in a tie.
The remaining three are Daniel Quayson, a 65-year-old Accountant; Stephen Herbert Ocran, a 68-year-old Jurist; and Nana Kwesi Etu, a 72-year-old record and archival administrator failed to secure a single vote.
As a result of the development, there will be a run-off between Mrs Buah and Nana Akomeah today, Monday February 15.
The other winners for the other regions are Odeneho Afankwa III, Central; Francis Albert Seth Nyonyo, Volta; Nana Owusu Achiaw Brempong, Ashanti; Katakyie Kwasi Bumagama II, Western North; Yaw Basoa, Ahafo; Kodwo Agyenim Boateng, Bono; Richard Kings Atikpo, Oti; Adam Zakaria, Savannah; Azumah Namoro Sanda, North East and Daniel Anlieu-Mwine Bagah, Upper West.
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, pursuant to Article 89(2) of the Constitution of Ghana, on February 1, released a list of appointees for the Council of State.
A statement signed by the acting Director of Communications at the presidency, Eugene Arhin, disclosed that a total of 11 persons had been appointed to the Council.
The Juabenhene, Nana Otuo Siriboe II, legal practitioner Sam Okudzeto and Stanley Blankson were all maintained by the President.
The others are Dr Margaret Amoakohene, Georgina Kusi, Alberta Cudjoe, Archbishop Justice Ofei Akrofi, Prof Ato Essuman, Alhaji Aminu Amadu, Kuoro Richard Babini Kanton VI and Alhaji Sule Yiremiah.
In addition, subject to consultation with Parliament, the President has also appointed former Chief Justice Georgina Theodora Wood, former Chief of Defence Staff of the Armed Forces Lt Gen J.B. Danquah and former Inspector General of Police Nana Owusu Nsiah to the Council.
The appointments, according to Mr Arhin, is in accordance with Article 89(2)(a)(i)(ii) and (iii) of the Constitution of Ghana.