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27.03.2009 Politics

Lobbying for KMA job enters crucial stageAKWASI AGYEMAN STORMS CASTLE...holds private meeting with President Mills

By Charles Takyi-Boadu - Ghanaian Chronicle

The Castle received a strange visitor yesterday around 12:20 noon, when President John Evans Atta Mills was just about to have his lunch.

The visitor to the Castle was no other person than the former Kumasi Metropolitan Assembly (KMA) boss, Nana Akwasi Agyemang, popularly known as 'Okumkom'.

The sharp lenses of The Chronicle picked him making a brisk walk to the office of the President, climbing the staircase leading to the President's office. Akwasi Agyemang, who spotted a grey political suit was seen beaming with smiles as he headed for the President's office.

Confidential sources close to the President told the paper he was there to carry his intense lobbying to the corridors of the main power brokers at the Castle, in his quest for the top KMA job, for which he has already shown keen interest.

The source told this reporter that the President was extremely surprised at the sudden decision of Akwasi Agyemang to visit him, after the latter's many years of inactivity in the National Democratic Congress (NDC) party, considering the fact that he did not only openly denounce his membership of the NDC, but also campaigned against them during the era of then President Kufuor, who he described as his blood relative.

At the meeting, Akwasi Agyemang was said to have told President Mills that he was the only one with a capable pair of hands to steer the affairs of Kumasi, taking into consideration his track record which he established during his term of office as Chief Executive Officer.

He is also said to have told the President that he was the only one who can deal with the residents of Kumasi, who are his own kith and kin with the needed force, since they have virtually become ungovernable since the NDC assumed power barely three months ago.

Though the Ashanti regional Chairman of the NDC, Daniel Ohene Agyekum is not happy with the unorthodox way and manner in which Akwasi Agyemang is going about lobbying for the position of Chief Executive of KMA, when under his past administration the metropolis was plunged into a series of controversies.

It is, however, not clear whether President Mills will grant him his request, as there are more party loyalists who have also thrown their hats into the ring to catch the President's eye.

Akwasi Agyemang's meeting comes amidst speculations of his inclusion in a delegation of 40 other chiefs from the Ashanti region, led by the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II that will be paying a courtesy call on the President at the seat of government, Osu Castle, on Monday.

In all this, the Ashanti Regional Chairman of the NDC, Daniel Ohene Agyekum is said to have taken strong exception to Akwasi Agyemang's unconventional actions towards clinching the top KMA position, especially where 'Okumkom' is reported to have treated the government appointees to a sumptuous dinner at the Kumasi Catering Rest house on the evening of Wednesday,

February 18, 2009, after they were sworn into office.

Mr. Ohene Agyekum is reported to have held an emergency meeting with government appointees who were recently sworn into office as representatives of the government to the KMA at the SSNIT Conference Hall in Adum, where he reprimanded them for accepting a dinner invitation from Nana Akwasi Agyemang.

Nana Akwasi Agyemang recently lauded President Mills' approach to systematically taking control of the administration of the country. He noted that the President has so far proven that he is capable of leading the country, stressing that “He is, by all indications in control.”

He also told The Chronicle that as a royal, he could get involved in all events in Kumasi, concerning the furore over the dinner he held for the assemblymen.