General News of Saturday, 6 October 2012
Source: Daily Guide
Enoch Teye Mensah, Minister for Water Resources, Works and Housing, is fuming with rage over comments purportedly made by Rebecca Akufo-Addo, wife of New Patriotic Party (NPP) presidential candidate, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, at a durbar of chiefs of the Ningo Traditional Council, that the area had seen no development in decades.
E.T. Mensah, the MP for Ningo Prampram, blasted Mrs Akufo-Addo, saying that the comment could only come from an ignorant person.
Interestingly however, the Minister avoided attacking the plaintive remarks by Kano Atiakpa III, Acting President of the Ningo Traditional Council, which paved the way for visiting Mrs. Akufo Addo’s submissions and assurances.
Angry and fuming over the remark and obvious warm reception she received from the chiefs and elders of Ningo where she hails from, the Minister described her remark as smacking of ignorance.
The people of Ningo were not happy about the siting of the newly created Ningo-Prampram District at Prampram even though Ningo was bigger and well endowed with facilities to host the new district.
The Minister was said to have used his influence to send the capital to Prampram where he comes from.
In her interaction with chiefs and queenmothers in the area, she raised the issue of inadequate development in Ningo and especially water shortage.
ET Mensah, a long-standing MP of the constituency, took exception to the point made by the NPP flag bearer’s wife that Ningo needed development, in her speech, firing back that she was ignorant of the realities on the ground.
Her call on the people of Ningo to dump the NDC, a party they had voted consistently for, for 20 years, also contributed towards raising the adrenaline level of the minister, who told Citi FM, “It’s rather unfortunate that somebody in the position of Rebecca Akufo-Addo should make such ignorant comments. It’s unfortunate that she is now trying to trace her connection to Ningo. It’s quite clear that she wasn’t visiting Ningo until lately. As at 1997 people who even weren’t Ningo loved and applauded me for all the things that I have been able to lobby and push for Prampram.”
He added that “if Nana Akufo-Addo’s wife cares, she could come along and we will take her round the whole constituency. There are more villages in and around the constituency than you can imagine. Almost all the villages and hamlets have got electricity connected; there are a few which are waiting for their meters.”
ET Mensah’s anger shot beyond the rooftop as he asked Becky to get her facts right before making remarks the way she did when she visited Ningo.
In a veiled outburst, he said, “She will have to wake up because of her husband. Her husband has also been a Member of Parliament for three terms. Can she point out to me that the water problem in Kyebi has been solved in the villages around? When they were in office galamsey was a major problem for water distribution in their area, did they deal with it?”
The NPP flag bearer’s wife’s visit was honoured with a durbar during which she and the chiefs exchanged pleasantries and remarks which turned out to worry the Minister and MP for the area.
The people of Ningo during the durbar complained about how their demand for a district, given their land size and population, had been ignored and rather taken to Prampram, the home town of the Minister.
Kano Atiakpa III, Acting President of the Ningo Traditional Council, in his welcome speech to Nana’s wife, said the people of Ningo had not had water for nine years and were finding it difficult to cope with the high cost of buying the life-giving fluid.
The chief was also unhappy about the naming of a proposed international airport in the area Prampram International Airport, since according to him, the land there did not belong to the people of Prampram but the Ningos.
Mrs. Akufo-Addo, a native of the area, spoke about the free SHS thus: “Anyone who ridicules the free SHS policy should withdraw their wards from the senior secondary school because it is an insult for people to think it’s impossible to implement the policy but wait for 20 years before it can be implemented.
“Ningo has not experienced any development. No amenities have been extended to Ningo. I am concerned about the fact that under this government, people have to buy every drop of water they need to use in their homes. Today, a bucket of water is 40Gp and sometimes it is even a struggle to get that bucket of water.”
She was accompanied by Dr. Nyaho Nyaho-Tamakloe, Mrs. Esther Obetsebi-Lamptey, Nii Ayikoi Otoo, Mrs Cecilia Bannerman and Sheikh I.C Quaye.