A group calling itself Good Governance Advocacy Group Ghana (GGAG) and Communal Labour Forum (CLF) have petitioned the Appointment Committee to reject Okyere Darko Mensah as the Western Regional Minister Designate.
According to the group, the Member of Parliament for Tarkoradi and former Minister for Western Region, Okyere Darko who has been nominated again by President Akufo-Addo for the Appointment Committee of Parliament to recommend him, by his deeds does not qualify for the position of Minister of State.
This, according to them is because of his interference in the chieftaincy institution, militarization of the 2020 general election, hooliganism, among others.
The groups accused him of unlawful and wrongful installation of one Benjamin Kesse as Municipal Chief Executive (MCE) for the Tarkwa-Nsuaem Municipal Assembly without reason and with much impunity.
Speaking at a press conference in Accra, the leader of the Communal Labour Forum, Baah Acheamfour stressed that, the Takoradi MP, Okyere Darko Mensah, adopted the use of brute force using the Western Regional Police Command as to prevent twenty-two (22) Elected Assembly Members from entering the Assembly Hall to participate in the confirmation of the MCE, Benjamin Kesse as expected by law.
They indicated that, Hon. Kwabena Okyere Darko-Mensah knowing so well that the laws governing the confirmation of the MCE allow for only the Presiding member of the Assembly to convene the meeting and that the Presiding member was not ready to allow the ill-fated action to go on, cruelly kidnapped the Presiding member.
He averred that the former Regional Minister hurriedly, in a period less than an hour swore in the illegally confirmed MCE after the outcome of the wrongful voting was declared by the Electoral Commission (EC). “We find this an affront to Ghana’s democracy since the process of swearing into office as an MCE is the sole preserve of the Judiciary and should have been done by a Judge of the circuit court in the municipality. The lawless action of the Regional Minister to swear in the MCE was in complete breach of Part 15 (4) of the Model Standing Orders for MMDAs, which specifically states that “In the event of the nominee polling two-thirds or more of the votes of members of the Assembly present and voting, the Electoral Commission shall notify the President of the approval of the Assembly within seven days,” he said.
On chieftaincy issues, the groups raised concerns that, the Takoradi MP and the former Western Regional Minister, Okyere Darko Mensah has connived with the MP for Tarkwa Nsuaem, Mireku Duka to unlawfully take over the chieftaincy title from the original clan, the Nyowah family. They added that, the Court and the Traditional Council has ruled on behalf of the recognized chief, Nana Nyowah Panyin IV but Okyere Darko, Mireku Duka and the MCE have refused to back off.
“Ladies and Gentlemen of the media, this conduct by Hon. Darko-Mensah who acted in his official capacity as the Western Regional Minister is in total breach of Laws enacted by the august house i.e. Local Governance Act, 2016 – Act 936,” he said.
According to him, they have conscientiously examined the style of leadership of Mr. Kwabena Okyere Darko-Mensah as Western Regional Minister between the period 2017 and 2021 and his rule has been full of Abuse of Authority, Gross disregard for Laws, Dictatorship, Capricious use of discretion, Intimidation, Violence etc.
“We, in view of these observations in respect of the unlawful, incorrigible, and recalcitrant behaviour of the former Regional Minister plead that he is totally rejected by all well-meaning members of the august house especially at the Appointments Committee.”