Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia has been tasked by President Nana Akufo-Addo and the leadership of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) to rescue Joe Osei Owusu, MP for Bekwai and First Deputy Speaker of Parliament from being shown the exit.
The cracks in the party in the constituency keeps widening as most members of the party have thrown their support to Akwasi Amofa-Agyemang who decided to contest in the parliamentary elections as an independent candidate following a misunderstanding between him and the NPP in the area.
Amofa-Agyemang, who has been described by NPP members as the best man to represent the people of Bekwai in Parliament, was disqualified from contesting in the primaries and Mr Osei Wusu, also known as Joe Wise, given the green light to be on the ballot paper on the ticket of the NPP.
Supporters of Mr Amofa-Agyemang did not take it kindly, as they accused Joe Wise and the party’s Constituency Chairman, Adu Gyamfi, of conspiring to prevent their preferred candidate from contesting. They have since vowed to vote against Mr Osei-Wusu and have mounted spirited campaign against their MP, winning more people to their side.
It is for this reason that Dr Bawumia has been sent to the Ashanti region to save Joe Wise who has been endorsed by President Akufo-Addo, Chairman Wontumi and Majority Leader Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu despite several protests among some party members.
Hearing that some former executives who helped Joe Wise win the seat have become strategists for Amofa-Agyemang, Dr Bawumia rushed to Bekwai to support Joe Wise who has bcome unpopular in the area.
After succeeding to get some chiefs to a gethering as though all is well in the constituency, Dr Bawumia called on NPP supporters to vote against the independent parliamentary candidate, Akwasi Amofa-Agyemang.
Contrary to how the people perceive Joe Wise, Dr Bawumia said “Your Member of Parliament [Joe Wise] is a good man so you should retain him. We don’t want any business of an independent candidate at all.”
In an atempt to smear dirt on Amofa-Agyemang, the Vice President stated his decision was a sign of disrespect to the party and President Akufo-Addo.
“You can all testify of the development here in Bekwai as a result of the hard work of Joe Wise. Roads, water, hospitals, clinics, CHPS compounds; all these he has done for you because he has worked on your needs,” Bawumia said as he appealed to the chiefs to support the MP.
Meanwhile, the supporters of the independent candidate have told Power News they are resolute and will win the seat.
“Joe Wise won the seat as an independent candidate but does not want anyone to contest him. We have done our research and what is clear is that we are winning the seat for Agyemang-Amofa. He wasn’t treated fairly and they know. Wontumi, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu and co know very well that they were not fair,” a former executive of the NPP who is one of the right hand men of Agyemang-Amofa intimated.
One of strategists for Mr Agyemang-Amofa said the people had already decided to change Joe Wise for their man.
“We know what the party bigwigs did before Vice President came here. The lobbying and the clandestine work to get people to show up to paint a picture that Joe Wise is the right choice ios known to us and I am telling them they can splash cash everywhere as they are doing but can’t win the seat,” she disclosed.