The Majority Leader in Parliament, Osei Kyei-Mensah- Bonsu has revealed a new dimension in the ongoing debate on monetization and vote-buying in Ghana’s politics.
He has alleged that some persons in political party leadership demand cars and parcels of lands in exchange for votes and political favours from MPs.
The Suame Legislator who has been in parliament since 1997 leaves the house in 2025 after 7 terms, is of the view that the model of money-induced politics creeping into the public space is not sustainable and acceptable.
Speaking at a media engagement on Wednesday, Osei Kyei-Mensah Bonsu said, ”You have people coming to you that buy a car for us before we vote for you. Especially the leadership of the parties, they ask for cars before they allow you to contest, even land…we should be real.”
He advocates an expanded voter base and open primaries which would allow for all card bearing members of the party at the local level to vote for Parliamentary Candidates as opposed to the current system of delegate elections.
“My own proposition is that the parties should introspect and perhaps scrap this thing as it is in established democracies…..we will perhaps have to go further downstream to enable every card-bearing member of the party to vote,” he suggested.
In 2016, a survey conducted by the Westminster Foundation for Democracy pegged the cost of winning political party parliamentary primaries at 85000 US Dollars.
Five 5 years later in 2021, a report from the Ghana Centre for Democratic Development revealed that the cost for winning party parliamentary primaries had doubled to a little over 175,000 US Dollars. To enter parliament, the cost of both primaries and the national election stands at 350,000 US Dollars.