Effia-Kwesimintsim Constituents Express Shock Over Vote-Buying Exposé

Some constituents in the Effia and Kwesimintsim Constituencies in the Western Region are in shocks over the parliamentary candidates of the New Patriotic Party cited in the vote-buying exposé published by Corruption Watch.

Speaking to Citi News the constituents said the investigative piece is only a confirmation of allegations they heard during the primaries.

“Monecracy in our politics is not a good thing. Both the NPP and the NDC engage in it in their primaries and conferences and share money. I wish the electorates will capitalize on it and punish the candidates in the December election. Most of the delegates are paid to pass the aspirants. So if the electorates will punish them, then it will serve them [candidates] right”.

“The bribes candidate pay before they get into office is not a good thing and it will not help the country. So if there is empirical evidence that these people took monies, they should be processed for court for a law to take its full course”, another said.

Although most of the accused candidates have refused to comment, Dr. Adwoa Kwagyiriba who contested the Effia constituency primary has denied the findings of the report.

“The only thing I did before the election was that I called them from their homes to meet them at the electoral area which I gave each person GHS50 as transportation fare. For that, yes I did. But for me to give them Television and GHS400 to 100 people, no. That would have meant I wasn’t serious to win the election because we had 420 people going into the election to vote. So if I were to give only 100 people that amount of money, then it means that I wasn’t in the race to win. So I didn’t do that and also the gentleman they are referring to as my campaign manager is not my campaign manager,” she said.

Details of latest report

The Centre for Democratic Development (CDD-Ghana), through its foremost anti-corruption campaign platform, Corruption Watch, exposed how some aspirants in the recently held New Patriotic Party primaries allegedly influenced delegates using money and other items to garner votes.

The report which highlights prominent persons like the Deputy MASLOC CEO, Hajia Abibata Shani Mahama Zakaria, Deputy Procurement Officer at COCOBOD, Alhaji Umar Farouk Aliu Mahama, incumbent Member of Parliament for Kwesimintim Constituency, Joseph Mensah and the Executive Secretary of the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment (NaCCA), Dr. Prince Hamid Armah also detailed how they allegedly influenced delegates.

CDD-Ghana has in the first of a series of reports, published findings from the Northern and Western Regions.

The Corruption Watch investigation alleged that the Deputy MASLOC CEO, Hajia Abibata Shani Mahama Zakaria took advantage of her office, using the State agency’s resources to induce delegates in the Yendi Constituency.

According to the report, Hajia Abibata Zakaria distributed GHS1,000 of state money under the MASLOC loans to each delegate in her constituency.

She is also alleged to have distributed three bags of NPK fertilizers to each of the delegates in Yendi.

Corruption Watch upon its findings contacted the Deputy CEO for her response.

She allegedly admitted to the findings but insisted there was nothing wrong with her decision.

“It is state money but the people applied for it. I do not regret it. As for the fertilizers, it was just one of the interventions for my people at Yendi. Those who benefitted were part of the people who made the decision.”

Her contender and winner of the elections, Alhaji Farouk Aliu Mahama, who is the son of the late Vice President Aliu Mahama is also said to have distributed 400 bottles of anti-snake sprays and 800 bags of fertilizers to delegates of the Yendi constituency, amongst other supplies to the constituency since 2017.

The third contender for the constituency has also been cited for distributing dried fish, salt and other ingredients.

In the Kwesimintsim Constituency in the Western Region, Dr. Prince Armah, who beat the incumbent MP, Joseph Mensah, is alleged to have paid an amount of GHs1,500 to each delegate, while the incumbent, Joseph Mensah is said to have given an amount of GHS1,000, in addition to a half piece of cloth to each female delegate and new singlets to each male delegate.

Source: Akwasi Agyei Annim (citifmonline.com)

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