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21 July 2016

Three scramble for KMA job

File photo: Kumasi Metropolitan Assembly (KMA)

File photo: Kumasi Metropolitan Assembly (KMA)

There are seemingly intensive lobbying and chess games among members of the National Democratic Congress in the Ashanti Region over who becomes the next Chief Executive of the Kumasi Metropolitan Assembly (KMA).

This is following the compulsory resignation of Kwadwo Bonsu.

Usually, the dramatis personae mainly consist of person(s) who are below ministers and particularly those yet to get opportunity to contribute their quota, but, this time around, the lobbyists include former ministers of the region.

According to credible sources, there had originally been five contenders to succeed Mr. Bonsu, but the contest has now move to its final stage for His Excellency the president to decide on who to appoint.

The list of the persons submitted to the Presidency includes but not limited to the following Samuel Sarpong, Peter Anarfi Mensah both of whom has served the region as ministers and a new entrant Thomas Kwabena Braimah a business mogul, a philanthropist and an ardent campaigner and a leading light of grassroots campaign who has lived his life and business in Kumasi.

Kwadwo Bonsu resigned after the Asanteman Council called on His Excellency President John Mahama to relieve him (Kwadwo Bonsu) of his post over his decision to unilaterally remove Amoamanhene, Nana Agyenim Boateng from the Kejetia Market project board without informing the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, and the absolute rejection of his apology to Nananom.

Interestingly, two of the lobbyists (Samuel Sarpong and Peter Anarfi Mensah) are placing

their hopes on their connections with the leadership of the party while ability to steer the ship of the exalted but challenging position has been thrown overboard.

On the other hand, TK Braimah is seriously battling for renewal of President John Mahama’s mandate giving what he perceives as his unrivaled achievements since he came on the saddle.

Meanwhile, feelers indicated that the rat race to the exalted position saw the emergence of power blocks both within the party and externally.

One group within the party is convinced that their choice Chief Executive candidate stands a better chance of catching the president’s eye based on what they perceive as his “impeccable records of achievement as a private man.

Investigations by the National Pen reveal that TK Braimah had secured support from all stakeholders of the Metropolis and pledged to unify the assembly for the development of the metropolis.

He promised “strong, proven leadership” to negotiate the departure from the Traditional Council, and to “make KMA an assembly that works not for a privileged few but for every one of us”, our investigations reveal.

Political connoisseurs think Thomas Kwabena Braimah would bring a “huge and fresh skills base” to Assembly if appointed by the President.

They played down his lack of experience, saying he would have “no problem stepping up to the job” having had a long career outside politics, adding, “He has done things outside of this place on so many different levels’’, noting the construction of a 1,500 lockable stores plus a bus terminal now Nana Afia Kobi Market formerly Abenkyi Market.

They argued that TK could have refused to hand over the over 17.5 million cedis market to KMA for management if not for the love of the metropolis and the region as a whole.

For many, this ‘extra time appointment’ should be much about who can unite and rally the assembly behind him to realize the objectives of the assembly rather than who has done it before. ‘It is time to introduce new faces (game changers) into the system to be able to the magic for the Assembly, they added.

Meanwhile, an insider source within the Assembly Members reveals the readiness and the resolve of Assembly Members to endorse Thomas Braimah’s appointment without fee. ‘We are ready to vote for any of the hopefuls, but we shall do it for Braimah for free’.

‘He has honoured the Mother of our King Otumfuo Osei Tutu II by naming a market he built after her (Nana Afia Kobi Market) after strenuous effort by Kwadwo Bonsu to take over the market from him forcefully.
The National Pen can report that TK Braimah’s relationship with Manyhia and the Asanteman Traditional Council is one that deserves to be guarded jealousy.

A section of party loyalists believes that the selection of Samuel Sarpong will mean skewing development to Nhyiaiso Constituency where he is currently standing trial as a parliamentary candidate.

They argued that Sarpong’s constituency is amongst ten constituencies that form the Assembly. For them, what KMA needs now is a neutral person to ensure development in all ten constituencies equitably.

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