FORMER Municipal Chief Executive of Ejisu Juaben, Yamoah Ponkoh, has confessed that he doled out over Gh¢300,000 to assembly members in his bid to occupy the position for the second time.
Ponkoh, who is a leading member of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), first occupied the MCE position May 2011, under late President Prof. John Evans Fiifi Mills, but was sacked during the John Dramani Mahama administration in July 2015.
He was, however, re-nominated for the same position in 2016 but was rejected twice by assembly members.
Giving an insight into what goes into the confirmation of MMDCEs following pockets of rejections of President Akufo-Addo’s nominees in some parts of the country, Mr. Ponkoh stressed “monecracy” rules at the local level, especially when it comes to confirmation of MMDCE nominees.
“Even after collecting my money, they (the assembly members) voted against me… I took a loan to pay these members but they rejected me. I spent over ¢3 billion (Gh¢300,000) and I’m still paying,” Ponkoh told Accra-based Neat FM on Tuesday (May 16, 2017).
“You can describe it as how you want,” Ponkoh remarked when the host stressed he paid bribe, adding: “These are people coming from far places and some have to eat and drink water among others.”
According to him, he paid each member of the about 70-body assembly Gh¢1,500 per round to be voted as MCE, but the members deceived him.
“It’s not easy… I’m still carrying that burden of servicing loans,” Ponkoh, who suffered two rejections emphasised.
Asked whether the proposed election of MMDCEs from next year can purge the situation, Ponkoh answered in the negative.
“It will rather worsen the situation. The contestants will rather spend more and it will take away the president’s powers to hire and fire… I’m one of the doubting Thomases but let’s wait and see. We’ll get to know the real NPP after a year,” Ponkoh opined.