Former Member of Parliament for Ledzokuku, Dr Bernard Okoe Boye has explained the reasons why the Presidential Candidate of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) in last year’s elections, John Dramani Mahama won in his constituency against President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo.
The former Deputy Minister of Health who was also defeated by the NDC’s parliamentary candidate Benjamin Ayiku Narteh, explained that most of the voters in the constituency are traditionally NDC sympathizers who were determined to vote for the main opposition party.
For a candidate of the NPP to win, he said, that person will have to overwork himself to ensure that victory.
Speaking in an interview with Giovanni Caleb on the 3FM Drive on Wednesday May 19, he said “Even in 2016 when I won the Ledzokuku seat it was the NDC that won the presidential. So the NDC and John Mahama won the presidential with about 45000 votes, President Akufo-Addo, then candidate had 43,000.
“The point I am making is that even in 2016 when there was a wind of change and everybody was calling for a change, NDC still won my seat in terms of the presidential. What it tells you is that it is a constituency that they the NDC are strong in.”
“It is like the NPP in Bantama or NDC Ketu South. So even in 2016, when I won the seat, it was skirt and blouse, they won it by a margin of about 2000 but I won the Parliamentary with about 1,5000. Immediately a presidential candidate wins a particular constituency, it tells you that their party as a brand has an upper hand so for an NPP candidate to win, then the candidate must appeal to maybe, some of the NDC folks or have some other sympathizers.”
“So that was the situation that brought me to parliament. So, I knew from day one. But guess what, before 2016 in 2012, the NDC averagely wins Ledzokuku seat with a margin 10,000 votes, it is only when NPP wins that it is about 1000, they (NDC) have the comfortable hold. In 2020 it went back to that default where President Akufo-Addo had 50,000 votes, Mahama had about 59000 plus.”
“What does it tell you? It tells you that if you are a candidate who is contesting on the ticket of the NPP you have a mountain to break. It is like what Amewu did in Volta Region.”
He added “I don’t believe that former President Mahama had done so well that he deserved to lead close to 9000 especially with the work that Akufo-Addo had done in the last four years. Policies like the free SHS which has affected many families, coupled with the Highways in Ledzokuku, the Teshie Landing beach. President Akufo-Addo has started and completed major projects that the community had wished for over close to 50 years.”
“So, the question is that why is that NDC got that lead? This is the answer.”
There are people who vote in a traditional manner. I know people who said [I] took care of them at the hospital but you know, I am NDC so I still voted for the NDC candidate. To be honest, most people you meet who tell you Doctor gave rice but didn’t give oil, it is not because of the oil.”
“I understand where I am coming, I was born, bread in the constituency, my mother who raised me was strong NDC. When you ask her why are you NDC she eventually tells you this is where they say we belong. To them even when the NDC is performing so badly it is a heritage you must protect. When it is deep-seated like this it takes patience, time to change… The seat can come back.”