Sunyani Chiefs reject Akufo-Addo

The Sunyani Traditional Council has rejected a request by the New Patriotic Party to have its Presidential candidate, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, to pay a courtesy call on the council Saturday morning.

In a letter dated December 18, the NPP requested  members of the Council to grant Nana Akufo-Addo and executives of the party audience Saturday morning ahead of the extra-ordinary congress which takes place on Saturday.

Nana Akufo-Addo’s intended visit was to broker peace between the Brong Ahafo Regional executives of the party and the Council. Since October, there have been tension between the two following comments by the two which each side considered to be in bad taste.

But after a marathon meeting Friday, the Council issued a statement in which it turned down the request by the party, grounding the decision on a pending impasse between the Council and the Brong Ahafo regional executives of the party.

“We are sorry to inform you that the Council cannot receive Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and his entourage in view of the fact that the impasse between the Sunyani Traditional Council and the BA branchg of the NPP has not as yet been resolved”.

The council added: “The impasse came about as a result of derogatory remarks by the Regional Chairman of the NPP Mr Asamoah Kyeremeh against Nananom.

“The Council wishes to state emphatically that Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo is not an enemy and that we do not have any personal qualms with him as a person,” the statement concluded.

Members of the Council were locked up in a crunch meeting, which sources said, was to consider stopping the New Patriotic Party from holding its extraordinary congress in the Brong Ahafo capital.

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The decision is prompted by the party’s regional executives’ failure to apologise for remarks made against the Paramount Chief, Nana Bosoma Asor Nkrawiri, which the Council considers unpalatable.

Nana Nkrawiri came under criticism in October from the NPP following his comments to the effect that President John Mahama will win next year’s election in the region with an overwhelming 80 per cent.

At a press conference, the regional executives of the party condemned the comments by the Chief, describing it as unfortunate, unacceptable and a breach of the country’s constitution.

Mr Kwaku Asomah-Cheremeh, the Regional Chairman of the NPP, said: “What we find appallingly and unbelievable is the fact that a 10 -kilometre stretch of uncompleted road could induce a chief of his standing to promise 70 to 80 percent victory in the region for the President.”

He advised the Paramount Chief “not to have appetite for favours from the President at the expense of their subjects. Our chiefs should realize that power is transient and the word impermanence is attached to every sphere of life.”

But the Traditional Council took exception to the comments by the regional executives and consequently asked the Brong-Ahafo Regional Council of Elders of the NPP to compel the regional executives to render an unqualified apology.

It said Mr. Asomah-Cheremeh had undermined the authority of the Sunyani Manhene by saying “the Chief stood to the lowest level to call on residents of the region to endorse the Presidency of President Mahama.”

However, the NPP has since failed to appear before the Traditional Council, as requested, to apologise for the comments; a situation that has caused the Traditional Council to consider preventing the party from holding its Saturday extraordinary congress in Sunyani.

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By Stephen Kwabena Effah|