Ghana’s Hub of Oil, Gold & Cocoa Denied Cabinet Portfolio Again

The final hope of the Western Region, which is considered as Ghana’s hub of oil, gold, manganese, cocoa, timber and other commodities, to have a representation atCabinet under thelast stage of President Nana Akufo-Addo’s second term administration, has been shattered, after the latest ministerial appointments.

The Anchor is informed that the exclusion of the region at Cabinet has been a major concern for many, particularly traditional leaders and the political class, who have been murmuring over it for sometime now, with the hope that such an error would be corrected during a reshuffle.

Among the people, concerns are that the area,which is the only region that produces more than half of the country’s mineral resources and 100 percent oil, should not be sidelined atdecision-making level of any government for whatever reason.

Presently, the Western Region alone produces 100% Oil, 100% Manganese,50% of Cocoa, 60% Gold and 100% Bauxite for the whole country.

Butthat expectation was dashed on Tuesday, February 7, when President Akufo-Addo announced changes to his government, without including anyone from the region in his Cabinet again, and thus leaving the people highly infuriated.

According to The Anchor’s information, since the governments of former presidents Jerry John Rawlings, John Agyekum Kufuor, John Evans Atta-Millsand John Mahama, through to the first-term administration of President Nana Akufo-Addo, the Western Region has had Cabinet representations, until recently when it has none.

It is believed that, one of the main reasons why road networks in the region are very poor and deficit in basic social amenities is because of the lack of a representation at Cabinet, who can push the interests of the region.

This paper has also chanced upon a list of Cabinet Ministers from the Western Region in Ghana’s political history, since the era of President Rawlings:

Cabinet Ministers from Western Region

President Rawlings:

Hon. John Frank Abu: Minister of Trade, Minister of Mining and Energy

President Kufuor:

First Term:

Hon. Papa Owusu Ankomah: Attorney General and Minister of Justice

Mrs. Gladys Asmah: Minister for Women and Children’s Affairs

Dr. Kwaku Afriyie: Minister of Health, Minister of Lands and Mines

Second Term:

Mrs. Gladys Asmah: Minister for Fisheries

Hon. Joe Ghartey: Attorney General and Minister of Justice

Hon. Joe Baidoo-Ansah: Minister of Trade and Industry

President Mills:

Hon. Lee Ocran: Minister of Education

Hon. George Sipa-Yankey: Minister of Health

President Mahama:

Hon. Armah Kofi Buah: Minister of Energy

President Akufo-Addo:

First Term:

Hon. Joe Ghartey: Minister for Railway Development

Hon. Catherine Afeku: Minister of Tourism

Second Term:

No Cabinet Minister

Interestingly, with the Western Region being one of the swing regions in Ghana’s political history, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) is lacing its boots to take advantage of the development.

Report has it that, former President John Mahama is promising the people Cabinet ministers, if he leads the National Democratic Congress (NDC) to victory in the 2024 elections.

According to sources, the strategy to get the region adequate representation in the party’s affairs at the decision-making levels came on the table for Mr. Mahama, after he was hinted that the region currently does not have any Cabinet representative under current President Akufo-Addo’s second term.

It is said to be one of the significant errors political strategists of the NDC have identified in the Akufo-Addo administration and are strategizing to capitalize on it as one of its key campaign tools, ahead of the 2024 elections, to win more votes in the region.

Mr. Mahama and NDC sources say, the recent decision by the party to appoint the Member of Parliament (MP) for the Ellembelle Constituency, Emmanuel Armah-Kofi Buah, as the deputy minority leader in parliament is not a mere coincidence, but, rather, part of the strategies to bait the electorate in order to have a firm grip and control not only over the Western Region, but also the Central Region.

The party in the region is currently matching the NPP boot-for-boot in terms of the number of parliamentary seats it occupies, as out of 17 seats, the NDC has eight against nine by the NPP.

Party stalwarts in the camp of Mr. Mahama insist the second term of President Akufo-Addo is the only time the Western Region is conspicuously missing at Cabinet and, therefore, the party will make political meals out of it.

It is, however, not clear what strategy the opponents in the NPP are deriving to counter the NDC, should the current appointment of ministers remain unchanged.

It would be recalled that one of the propositions and defences put up by the NDC, following the controversial changes made to its leadership in parliamentrecently, was that the party’s decision is to ensure regional balance.

Interestingly, barely 24 hours after the announcement, the party in the Western Region swiftly congratulated Mr. Armah-Kofi Buah, saying the region is “proud” on his new role as the deputy minority leader in parliament.

In statement issued and signed by the Western Regional Secretary of the NDC, Mr. Joseph Nelson, in Takoradi, the party noted that “since his giant killing feat in 2008, when hebeat the then incumbent MP, Hon. Freddie Blay, that ushered him into parliament for the first time, he has grown to become a stalwart in the region, parliament andthe political space in our dear country.”


The latest changes made by President Akufo-Addo to his government saw the Member of Parliament (MP) for AdansiAsokwa, K.T. Hammond, picked to replace Alan Kyerematen, who stepped down as the Trade and Industry Minister.

MP for Abetifi Constituency, Bryan Acheampong, has also been nominated to head the Ministry of Food and Agriculture, while MP for Akwapim South, Osei Bonsu Amoah, has been picked as the Minister of State at the Ministry of Local Government.

MP for Nhyiaeso and former head of MASLOC, Stephen Amoah, has been nominated as a Deputy Trade Minister.

Mohammed Amin Adam has also been elevated as the Minister of State at the Finance Ministry. He replaces Charles Adu Boahen.

Stephen Asamoah-Boateng, former Director-General of the State Interests and Governance Authority (SIGA), becomes the new Minister for Chieftaincy and Religious Affairs.

Herbert Krapa, a Deputy Trade Minister, has been moved to the Energy Ministry as a deputy minister.


More To Come…

Source: Anchorghana

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