You are here: HomeNews2016 11 17Article 487819

Politics of Thursday, 17 November 2016

Source: Graphic.com.gh

Awutu Senya West: Will it be Hanna Tetteh or George Andah?

The Awutu Senya West Constituency in the Central Region is expected to witness one of the fiercest contests at the parliamentary level during the December 7 polls. The constituency which was carved out of the Awutu Senya Constituency in 2012, has seven major towns which hold the key to the outcome of the election.

They are Senya Beraku, Awutu Beraku, Bawjiase, Obrachire, Bontrase, Jei-Krodua and Ayensuako. From 99 in 2012, the constituency now has 119 polling stations.

Members of the various parties contesting the parliamentary seat, especially the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC), and the main opposition, New Patriotic Party, (NPP) have already laced their boots for the contest. This is by undertaking various campaign strategies such as door-to-door and keep fit activities to woo the ordinary voter.

Although no single candidate has won the parliamentary seat back-to-back, a careful look at the past records of the parliamentary election in the area show that the NDC, as a party, has had the edge, having won the seat four times ( 1996, 2000, 2008 and 2012). The only time the NPP won the seat was in 2004.

This makes the contest a straight fight between the current Member of Parliament, Ms Hanna Serwaa Tetteh, who is a lawyer and vying to retain the seat for the first time, and the new kid on the block for the NPP, Nenyi George Andah, a management consultant.

A third aspirant, Alan Barnes is contesting on the ticket of the Convention People’s Party (CPP).

Constitutional rule

The return to constitutional rule in 1992 saw the National Convention Party (NCP), which was part of the Progressive Alliance comprising the NDC, NCP and EGLE Party, annexing the Awutu Senya Constituency parliamentary seat after the NPP withdrew from the parliamentary race due to its disagreement over the outcome of the presidential election. It was, therefore, virtually a cool chop for the NCP candidate, Daniel William Osardu.

In 1996, an ardent supporter of the Danquah-Busia-Dombo Tradition and a former Chairman of the NPP, Mr Haruna Esseku, stood on the ticket of the party in an attempt to take the seat from the NDC. However, the NDC with its candidate, Babalamin Abu-Sadat, proved too strong for the opposition and reclaimed the seat for his party by polling 20,347 votes as against 11,722 for Mr Esseku.

Other contestants including D.C. Okine, ably supported by the running mate of Flt. Lt. Rawlings, Kow Nkensen Arkaah, contested on the CPP ticket.

Again, the NDC, represented by Hanna Tetteh, took the seat (with 18,813 votes) for the party in the 2000 parliamentary election after defeating Lawyer John Kojo Ackah of the NPP, 12,639. The other candidates were: Joshua Kweku Bentum of CPP (3,452), Sam Kish of the National Reform Party(NRP), 513, Yusif Abadallah, People’s National Convention(PNC), 451 and Isaac Afful-Brew of the United Ghana Movement (UGM) 116.

After reorganising itself, the NPP, in 2004 and this time represented by Mr Oppey Abbey exorcised the ghost of the NDC by winning the seat for the first time. This is despite one of its key members, David Nana Larbie, going independent. Mr Abbey polled 33,624 votes while the NDC candidates Moses A. Acquah had 20,936. Others, including Mr Larbie secured 12,082 votes, Stephen Kobina Quaye of CPP, 570 and Oliver Tetteh of PNC, 523.

In 2008, Mr Larbie, who had joined the NDC took the seat from the NPP by defeating Mr Abbey with 25,666 votes as against 23,329 for the then sitting MP, Mr Abbey. The other votes were shared among Haroon Tetteh Mensah, an independent candidate, (1,062); Richard Paa Tawiah, CPP (985), and Rev. Kofi Akotua Obeng, Democratic Freedom Party(DPP), 689.

Division

When the constituency was divided into Awutu Senya East and Awutu Senya West in 2012, Ms Tetteh came back again to win the parliamentary seat for the NDC. She amassed 23,082 votes against Mr Abbey of the NPP with 18,487 votes. The other parties; Progressive People’s Party (PPP), CPP and an independent candidate, shared the remainder of the votes.

Having been badly bruised at the parliamentary level, the NPP, led by Nenyi Andah, would be hoping to win the seat for the second time for the party. So, would Ms Tetteh be the first sitting MP to win the seat back-to-back or would it be Nenyi Andah?.

Checks by the Daily Graphic so far indicate that it is too close to call, as the two candidates are evenly matched. But the two parties disagree with each claiming they are on top.

NDC

For Mr Simon Duodu, the Awutu Senya West NDC Chairman, Ms Tetteh was in pole position to retain the seat.

“Our candidate is selfless and dedicated to the improvement of lives of the people. She is a hardworking woman who is going to win,” he asserted, adding that the projects she had undertaken, the support for education improvement, among other things, would give her the seat.

For example, he said, the organisation of free vacation classes for final-year junior high school candidates, provision of educational materials including books for 2,500 pupils, maths sets and lobbied for a grant of $200,000 for the construction of the Awutu D/A Primary School.

“She has promised she would pay the school fees of those with outstanding results in the Basic Education Certificate Examination”.

Mr Duodu said with all the aggrieved supporters of Mr Larbie now on board, the new candidate of the NPP, Nenyi Andah, would not do anything to the chances of Ms Tetteh.

NPP

For his part, the Chairman of the Awutu Senya West Constituency of the NPP, Mr Stephen Quaye, said Nenyi Andah who was development-oriented was poised to take the seat for the party.

“Although he has not even gone to Parliament, he has started doing work in the constituency. Mr Andah presented scholarships to 45 students at Senya recently, re-shaped the Bawjiase-Obrachire Road, organised free health screenings at Senya, Awutu Beraku, Bawjiase and Jei-Krodua, repaired a broken down borehole at Papase, rehabilitated a distressed school at Nyarkokwa, etc”, he said.

The chairman said the people in the Awutu Senya Constituency were yearning for a change which was imminent, adding that the party had learnt from its mistakes from the last elections.

Mr. Quaye said although the party was confident of winning the parliamentary seat, it was not taking chances at all.

“Our chance are very bright even though it is not easy but we are working and listening to the people on their needs since they are eager to have him as MP so that he can continue with the good works he has started”.