A SECTION of New Patriotic Party (NPP) followers in the Suame Constituency in the Ashanti Region has sternly criticised the incumbent Member of Parliament (MP) for the area, Hon. Osei Kyei Mensah Bonsu's decision to contest the seat for the fourth consecutive time.
To the group, Hon. Mensah Bonsu had failed woefully to improve the fortunes of the constituency during his last three terms as MP so he should be sidelined in the yet-to-be-announced constituency primaries of the party.
Hon. Mensah Bonsu has since 1996 been representing the constituency in the August House on the ticket of NPP, and had again made known his intention to contest for the seat in the upcoming polls.
But the group contends that the constituency was under developed and engulfed with a myriad of challenges due to the inefficiency of their MP, who they claimed was unpopular in the constituency, warning that the party would lose the seat if the incumbent MP was allowed to stand again.
To avert this, they had passionately appealed to the executives of the party in the constituency to replace Hon. Mensah Bonsu with someone who would have the concerns of the constituency at heart at all times to ensure that the party retained the seat hands down.
The four-year-old group, dubbed Patriotic Citizens of Suame Constituency (PCSC) of NPP with a membership of over two thousand, made these known at a well-attended press conference at Suame, a suburb of Kumasi.
Mustapha Abdul Salam, Secretary of the group who spoke on behalf of the group members, vowed to vote against Hon. Mensah Bonsu if the executives of the party failed to replace him with someone who is capable of ensuring total victory for the party.
Elucidating why the group had taken that decision, Mr. Salam alleged that sometime ago, Hon. Mensah Bonsu made some derogatory remarks about artisans in Suame Magazine to President Kufuor and that was why the President had failed to fulfill a promise he made to assist the artisans with GH¢5,000,000 to improve upon their works.
He also claimed that Hon. Mensah Bonsu does not hail from the constituency, but from Bronkuom in the Kwabree district, and observed, “that is why he does not know all the communities in the constituency”.
Mr. Salam deplored that though Hon. Mensah Bonsu had been MP for almost 12 years, he could not put up an office for the party, saying that “the current office of the party was given to us by a concerned supporter of the party”.
Still accusing the MP, the Secretary of PCSC said the area was without proper roads, hospitals, schools among other infrastructure, all because of the inefficient leadership skills of their MP, and wondered aloud why Hon. Mensah Bonsu, who during the 2004 electioneering campaign allegedly begged the constituents to allow him to contest the seat for the last time, was now seeking to stand again.
Mr. Salam therefore entreated the constituency executives of the party to as a matter of urgency ensure that Hon. Mensah Bonsu was made to rescind his decision of contesting, to save the party from losing the seat.
“Democratically, he can avail himself for another term of office, but we are advising our constituency executives to find another person who can convincingly win the seat for the party.”
Mr. Salam hinted the group's readiness to embark on a peaceful demonstration to register their disapproval whenever Hon. Bonsu comes to pick his nomination forms.
He concluded that all that PCSC was requesting “is Hon. Mensah Bonsu should quit his decision to contest for the seat. The earlier, the better; and enough is enough”.
From Fred J.A. Ibrahim Jnr., Kumasi