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11.03.2008 Politics

Baah Wiredu's backyard boils

By The Chronicle
Baah Wiredu's backyard boils
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The Chronicle reports o Tuesday that a fight nearly broke out in the Asante-Akyem constituency branch of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), in the presence of its Member of Parliament (MP), Hon. Kwadwo Baah Wiredu, the District Chief Executive (DCE), Hon. George Kwame Frimpong and the constituency chairman, Nana Asabre at a meeting organized by the MP, to interact with the party delegates and a group of party members.

According to the paper, at the meeting where the MP was canvassing for votes, the delegates complained bitterly about the inability of their legislator to fulfill his promises and above all his neglect of the constituency.

The paper quotes its sources as saying that the MP, who doubles as the Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, was grilled by his constituents who further accused the constituency chairman of running a one-man show. The delegates, who were not happy with developments in the constituency, to the effect that after the 2004 general elections, there had been no effective constituency meetings to discuss the fortunes of the party, blamed the MP and constituency chairman, Nana Asabre, for their inactions.

"The meeting took place at Konongo, where the polling station chairmen and party agents raised the issue of money, which they claimed the Minister had promised but failed to deliver. According to our information, after being grilled and given a tongue-lashing for neglecting them, the Minister in turn blamed the DCE for the lapses. The DCE also blamed the woes of the party on the constituency chairman who did not take it lightly," according to the paper.

The polling station chairmen, together with some of the constituency executives, accused the chairman of arrogating powers to himself, by single-handedly picking the delegates who attended the December national delegates congress at Legon.

According to party members the chairman's action stemmed from a public comment he allegedly made to the effect that whoever supported Nana Akufo-Addo at that time, would not be selected to attend the congress. The delegates, who are already planning to take their votes away from the hardworking Minister, on the basis that he had neglected them, only to resurface when elections are due, quizzed the MP over their allowances.

Mr. Baah Wiredu confirmed the meeting but denied issues of fisticuffs and grilling.

According to him, even in the developed world, one cannot satisfy the needs of everybody.

He said, together with his party members in the constituency, they were seriously working as a team and referred to a number of people who were doing a good job in his constituency.

"Mr. Baah Wiredu, who chose to school this reporter about when and how in the past The Chronicle was shit-bombed and its publisher suffered a lot of harassment among other things said he was happy to see people in his constituency working very hard to make ends meet. "Go to my constituency, the people are very responsible and doing their work. How can they say that I have neglected them?" he asked and stated that it was unfortunate that a wedge was being created between him d his constituents.

The Minister further denied promising his polling agents or for that matter anyone, anything. "When did I make the pledge and how? I have never promised them anything, and I have not neglected them, I have been going there every week," he said.

The Minister told The Chronicle that nobody had ever complained bitterly against him in the constituency, but his statement was in sharp contrast to that of the DCE.

According to the DCE, George Frimpong, the polling station chairmen quizzed the Minister, but it did not result in any misunderstanding or open confrontation.

The constituency chairman, Nana Asabre, who was reported to be at the meeting, flatly denied his presence.

"I was not at the meeting. I was at a funeral and came home very late, but I know what they discussed," he told the Chronicle paper.

He dismissed the allegation that he had a brawl with the DCE saying. "It has not been my nature, even if I was pushed to the extreme of provocations I will do my best to control my temper."

Meanwhile, the Chronicle says that a number of people are eying Baah Wiredu's seat, among them one Andy Appiah Kubi, who works with the Ghana Free Zones board.

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