March 30, 2011
Odumase (Ash), March 30, GNA — The Asante Akim North District Assembly failed to elect a Presiding Member (PM) for the second time after three rounds of voting, apparently due to sharp political polarization of the Assembly.
Not even a one hour break after the second round of voting to allow for consultations could convince members to stand down from their entrenched positions as the three candidates consistently maintained the same number of votes.
After an election to elect a PM on March 15 following the inauguration of the assembly ended in a stalemate, the assembly reconvened on Monday for another round of voting.
The three candidates, George Kyei Barfour, a former PM, Nana S.K. Ohemeng, Maawerehene of Odumase Traditional Area and Paul Kwame Nkrumah Dikwah, a businessman polled 32, 31 and six votes respectively in the previous election maintained the same number of votes after three rounds of voting.
This led to an hour break to allow for consultations but, the situation remained unchanged after the third round, compelling some members to move a motion for the three candidates to step aside for fresh nominations.
It was, however, fiercely resisted by some members who argued that it was illegal to move a motion while the assembly was without a PM.
They said the assembly was not properly constituted without a PM, and that the District Co-ordinating Director who was presiding was only acting pending the election of a substantive PM.
This threw the meeting into chaos as the assembly members apparently divided on partisan grounds resorted to verbal exchanges, some of which were foul and unprintable.
Mr. Lucas Yeleyele, the Municipal Electoral Officer in an effort to break the deadlock, suggested some electoral procedures which were also vehemently rejected by some members who reminded him of his core duty of supervising the election.
After hours of debate on various options to break the deadlock proved futile, the District Co-ordinating Director, Mr M.D.A. Avah, adjourned the meeting indefinitely, assuring members that a new date would be communicated to them.