A former Deputy Minister of Employment and Labour Relations, Baba Jamal, was chased out by irate National Democratic Congress (NDC) supporters at Nima in Accra last Saturday.
Baba Jamal has over the years voted at Akwatia in the Eastern Region where he represented the people in Parliament between 2012 and 2016.
DAILY GUIDE gathered that he had since transferred his vote to Ayawaso East at Nima in Accra ostensibly to enable him to become the NDC parliamentary candidate in the next elections.
As a result, Baba Jamal tried to participate in the NDC’s conference to elect constituency executives held at the Nima Cluster of Schools last Saturday, but the irate NDC members prevented him and virtually declared him persona non grata in the constituency.
DAILY GUIDE learnt that about 40 irate NDC supporters, some heavily built, insisted that even though they recognized Baba Jamal as an NDC member, he had not contributed anything to the development of Nima to justify his decision to serve them as their MP in the next elections.
Baba Jamal arrived at the voting centre at about 11:30 am in his 4×4 Toyota Land Cruiser but when he tried to enter the premises, the irate supporters blocked him.
A source at the Nima Police confirmed the incident and said the police had to persuade Baba Jamal to leave the premises because the irate NDC supporters were never going to budge.
The dejected Baba Jamal had to drive away without voting even though his name was believed to be second on the NDC’s register.
It is unclear why Baba Jamal is abandoning Akwatia for Nima after he had been defeated at the polls in 2016 by Mercy Adu Gymafi, aka Ama Sey.
But sources say he believes can get support because Nima is predominantly a Muslim community.
How it happened
Voting began around 10am on Saturday after it was delayed as a result of the poor weather conditions and at about 11:30am, Baba Jamal arrived to cast his vote.
After standing behind the gate for about 40 minutes, Baba Jamal called the Regional Command for support.
Personnel, led by Chief Superintendent Kwesi Ofori, director in charge of operations, arrived at the scene with two police vehicles.
Chief Superintendent Kwesi Ofori, director of operations of Accra Regional Police Command, initially wanted to escort the former MP for Akwatia to enter the premises to vote but the youth asked him not to ‘dare’ enter the premises with Babal Jamal.
All efforts by the police chief to convince the youth and the electoral committee to allow Baba Jamal to exercise his franchise fell on deaf ears, as they chanted “Baba Jamal cannot impose himself on us at Nima; he should go to where he comes from…”
The youth were of the view that Baba Jamal thinks of them as illiterates, who do not know anything; hence he wants to impose himself on them after losing his Akwatia seat to the New Patriotic Party (NPP).
Sensing danger, Baba Jamal immediately moved back to his vehicle while the police officers tried to calm tempers.
The electoral officer, together with some officers at Nima Police Station, held a short meeting with Baba Jamal in his vehicle. After the meeting, they left the premises to allow voting to continue.
When DAILY GUIDE later contacted the Nima Divisional Police Commander, Chief Superintendent Abraham Acquaye, said a total of over 40 personnel were deployed from the regional command to provide security during the elections at Nima.
He said even though voting did not start on time, the election went on peacefully and ended around 10:30pm.
After the peaceful election, the following persons were elected as executives- Olabode William – Chairman; Vice Chairman – Issah Guarani; Secretary-Yahaya Barani; Assistant Secretary – Abdul Kadiri Umar ; Organizer – Yussif Kamaludeen; Deputy Organizer – Issaka Yaman and Women Organizer – Fati Mohammed.
By Linda Tenyah-Ayettey