In Ghana politics, it is gradually becoming a norm for political parties that when any of their party representatives passed on, their mourning widows will be forced to replace their late husbands in the name of retaining the party seat in Parliament. This new development is becoming a matter of public debate across the country among some well-meaning Ghanaians including politicians themselves.
Somewhere in October 2020, Editor of the Patriot Newspaper, Peter Bamfo advised various political parties against ‘forcing’ mourning widows from taking the place of their spouses in parliament regardless of it serving their purposes.
Mr. Bamfo made the call in an interview with Samuel Eshun on the Happy Morning Show (Happy 98.9 FM and e.TV Ghana) monitored by Apexnewsgh.com, He said, “It is important that we do not let partisan politics ruin our culture. You can’t use this kind of situation to cure the challenge of low women representation in parliament”.
However, the same month of October, a Member of Parliament (MP) came out openly to register his displeasure with such a developing trend in Ghana politics. According to the MP who was very furious and worried about the development in Ghana politics, He said, such development puts them at risk as husbands, because when such a move is favoring women, their lives as husbands will be in danger.
However, it appears the trend is becoming very lucrative for these widows because, all those who contested under the ticket of both NPP and NDC won massively in the 2020 parliamentary elections.
In January 2019, Alhassan contested the parliamentary seat for the Ayawaso West Wuogon Constituency, running to replace her late husband. She won the election with 68.80 percent of the valid votes cast. The other candidates, Kwasi Delali Brempong of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) polled 30.52 percent, William Kofi Dowokpor of the Progressive People’s Party (PPP) polled 0.58 percent, and Clement Boadi of the Liberal Party of Ghana (LPG) polled 0.10 percent.
Mrs. Lydia Seyram Alhassan successfully contested the 2020 Ghana general election under the ticket of the New Patriotic Party and has retained her seat after polling 39,851 out of 77,604 total votes.
Her closest competitor actor Mr. John Dumelo of the NDC polled 37,778 while an independent candidate got 108 votes.
Mrs. Lydia Akanvariba Lamisi Adakudugu is the wife of the late David Adakudugu the NDC parliamentary candidate for the Tempane constituency, who later died in September last year, after his departure, there was a need to hold a new primary to elect a new candidate to represent the party at the December 7, 2020, parliamentary polls. That was how Mrs. Lydia was considered as the NDC Parliamentary Candidate for the Tempane Constituency.
According to the results, Lawyer Kpemka pulled only 16,461 votes which represent 44.01 percent against 20,939 representing 55.99% for the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Madam Lydia.
However, another widow among them is the Parliamentary candidate for Mfantseman Constituency in the Central Region, Mrs. Ophelia Mensah Hayford who succeeded her late husband Mr. Ekow Kwansah Hayford as the Parliamentary candidate for Mfantseman Constituency after some armed robbers shot and killed him while on campaign duties.
Mrs. Mensah Hayford makes a history of winning a second term for Mfantseman Constituency under the ticket of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) with 36,021 against her competitor Mr. James Odziifo Essoun who had 32,438 votes.
However, her victory came as a result of her husband’s cordial relationship with the people of Mfantseman.
The writer isn’t suggesting that widows have hands in whatever that happened to their husbands, that is not the case, but the question is, could these widow’s replacement of their husbands in Parliament be a better way of mourning their husbands? It is becoming a norm and a matter of concern to most Parliamentarians themselves.
Apexnewsgh.com/Ghana/Ngamegbulam Chidozie Stephen
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