The decision by Enoch Teye-Mensah, the former member of Parliament for Ningo-Prampram to contest for the Council of State slot for Greater Accra appears to have angered the National Democratic Congress (NDC) in his constituency.
The constituency executives of the party are seeking to talk the former minister out of the contest.
The party in the constituency said it is shocked that its onetime long-serving MP is vying for membership of the yet to be constituted Council of State in an NPP government.
According to them, his decision is a betrayal of the NDC, and may send wrong signals to the party’s grassroots members.
The constituency secretary for the NDC, Cephas Teye, told Citi News, “We are yet to convene a meeting to discuss that issue. The first time I heard it, I was shocked the old man [ET Mensah] can go that far. For somebody who has been a minister for so many years and when there is a change in government you go and join the other government, to be a member of the council for that government is something else.”
“I called the chairman and told him about what I’ve heard. We are yet to meet and discuss how we will go about that decision; it’s either we go to him or see what else to do.”
“Majority of our people don’t understand that it is non-partisan, so as soon as they see him during a different government regime, they will be thinking that he has gone to join them [NPP].”
The Council of State consists of one representative from each region of Ghana, elected in accordance with regulations made by the EC under article 51 of Ghana’s constitution, by an electoral college comprising two representatives from each of the districts in the region, nominated by the District Assemblies in the region, and eleven other members appointed by the President.
Mr. Mensah had served in Ghana’s legislature for two decades till he was defeated in the 2015 National Democratic Congress (NDC) primaries by his protege Sam George, who subsequently won the parliamentary election.
Will E.T. Mensah join the NPP?
It is not clear whether by this decision, Mr. E.T. Mensah may be contemplating breaking away from the NDC.
Ordinarily, council of state members in any government are people who have some form of leanings towards the party in power. It is thus unclear how Mr. E.T. Mensah can emerge victorious in such an election to be one of the advisers for a President who contested and won on the ticket the New Patriotic Party (NPP).
Mr. E.T. Mensah’s time in politics dates back to 1992, when he was appointed Minister for Youth and Sports by President Jerry Rawlings. He later stood for the 1996 parliamentary elections and was elected MP for the Ningo-Prampram constituency where he served for over two decades.
He has also served in government as Minister for Employment and Social Welfare in 2010, and the Minister for Education in 2012.
The Council of State election is slated for Thursday, February 16, 2017.
By: Jonas Nyabor/citifmonline.com/Ghana