President Nana Addo Dankwah Akufo-Addo is expected to name his first batch of Regional Ministerial nominees today. According to sources, President Akufo-Addo who visited the New Patriotic Party (NPP) headquarters at Asylum Down, Accra, yesterday amid wild jubilation by the party members, said he dropped the hint last week at a function with party executives in Accra. This is in accordance with Article 256(1)(b) of the 1992 Constitution which empowers the president with the prior approval of parliament, to appoint for each region, a minister who shall represent him in the region. Even before the president officially drops the list later today, speculations are rife over who he is most likely to name. Sources say Ishmael Ashitey, Greater Accra Regional Chairman of the New Patriotic party (NPP), is likely to be named Greater Accra Regional Minister-designate, Lawyer Asumah Kyeremeh for Brong-Ahafo Region and Kwamena Duncan, a regional panelist on Peace FM's 'Kokrokoo' morning show programme, for the Central Region. Mr. Ashitey was a former Minister of Fisheries under the Kufuor administration and former MP for Tema East. Also likely to be named is Dr. Kwaku Afriyie, the Member of Parliament for Sefwi Wiawso, for the Western Region and Salifu Saeed, a former DCE for Nanumba, as the most likely candidate for the Northern Regional. The immediate past MP for Bosomtwi, Simon Osei, is tipped to become the Ashanti Regional Minister. Ms Gifty Eugenia Kusi, the NPP's former MP for Tarkwa Nsueam in the Western Region, is likely going to be the Deputy Regional Minister-designate. However, there is confusion in the NPP in the Northern Region over the appointment of a Deputy Regional Minister for the region. A group calling itself Youth Movement for Justice and Growth has alleged that there are intentions from the presidency to substitute Chebire Moses for Solomon Boar, MP for Bunkpurugu, for the position of Deputy Northern Regional Minister. Chebire Moses was the secretary to the Regional Minister under the Kufuor administration and willing to cooperate and mediate matters between the party's leadership and government representatives in the region, the group claimed. According to the group, it would resist any attempt by any individual or group to deny or substitute Mr. Moses for anybody. Speaking to Daily Guide, the secretary of the group Haruna Abdul Rashid, said the presidency promised to consult the constituency leadership before any nomination is made and that the entire regional chairman endorsed Moses.
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