The New Patriotic Party (NPP) has announced plans to hold parliamentary elections in several constituencies early in 2024. These elections are expected to bring new contenders into the political scene, creating an air of excitement for the available parliamentary slots.
The Eastern Region has identified six constituencies that are likely to witness interesting contests due to the candidates expressing interest in running for them. According to investigations by the Daily Democrat newspaper, the decisions of incumbent Members of Parliament in these constituencies will not affect the performance and potential victory of the new entrants.
The candidates to watch in these constituencies include Sammi Awuku, former National Youth Organizer of the NPP and current Chief Executive Officer of the National Lottery Authority (NLA), who is vying for the Akwapim North constituency. Kwame Appiah Kodua, former NPP Regional Organizer for the Eastern Region and NADMO coordinator, is seeking the Fanteakwa North constituency. Dr Kingsley Agyeman, CEO of the Scholarship Secretariat, is running for the Abuakwa South constituency.
Mark Okraku Mantey, the Deputy Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, has set his sights on the Ayensuano constituency. Kingsley Ofosu is targeting the Atiwa West seat, while Joseph Osei Jagba hopes to win the hearts of the electorates in the New Juaben North constituency.
It is worth noting that the incumbents in these constituencies have served an average of two terms, except for Ayensuano, which is currently represented in parliament by the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC).
The investigations conducted with delegates and supporters suggest that the new entrants could achieve significant victories. However, Sammy Awuku and Dr Kingsley Agyemang are believed to be the favorites leading the polls.
In the previous 2020 primaries, the NPP witnessed incumbent MPs in the Eastern Region losing to new entrants, including Eric Kwakye Darfour losing the Nkawkaw seat to Joseph Frimpong and Mark Assibey-Yeboah of New Juaben South losing to Michael Okyere Baafi.
The rejection of incumbent MPs and acceptance of new entrants can be attributed to factors such as non-performance, prolonged tenure in parliament, leadership style, and the contributions of potential candidates in the constituency, as revealed by the investigations.
The NPP has scheduled a special delegates congress in August 2023 to narrow down the presidential candidate contenders to five, with the main congress set for November 2023 to elect the party’s representative for the 2024 general elections.