Dr. Nii Adjei Kraku II, Paramount Chief of Tema Traditional Area has called on government to honour an outstanding politician, warning it will be hypocritical to wait until his passing before posthumous praise is heaped on him.
“Hon. Bagbin as we all know is the longest serving Member of Parliament in the history of our 4th Republic. But that is not the point, the main point is that throughout his days in the Legislature, not a single person has cause to accuse him of any wrongdoing.
Speaking to journalists at his palace in Tema, Nii Kraku pointed out that Mr Alban Kingsford Sumana Bagbin, current MP for Nadowli Kaleo and Second Deputy Speaker of Parliament, had been an exemplary breed of Ghana’s political class and deserved to be hoisted as a worthy role model by the state.
“He has been a Health Minister and served in other capacities in government and even though corruption perception had punctuated the days of his government, not a single allegation has been made against him.” Nii Kraku said.
He said Mr Bagbin’s sterling performance in public service was exemplary, pointing out development projects that he had brought to the Nadowli Kaleo Constituency he represented since becoming their representative at the onset of the 4th Republic.
“The people of Nadowli/Kaleo keep sending Hon. Bagbin to represent them in Parliament since 1992 and it is quite clear why; he is resourceful and commands a huge sense of industry; and let’s not forget his fierce reputation as an incorruptible man,” Dr. Nii Kraku ll said.
He said he was not held back at all from nominating Hon. Bagbin for a national award by President Akufo-Addo because he knows that the President’s well-demonstrated embrace of members from all walks of the political life, including even appointing the PNC’s 2016 Flagbearer as an Ambassador at Large was clear that he could be persuaded to “do the right thing.”
Mr Bagbin is one of the most respected politicians in Ghana and arguably, the most vastly experienced Parliamentarian. Following his first election to the August House at the beginning of Ghana’s democracy in 1992, the people of Nadowli/Kaleo have since retained him.
His long stay in Parliament has seen him rise through the ranks to serve as both Minority and Majority Leader for his party, NDC. His track record also includes; leading Ghana to the ECOWAS Parliament and serving in ministerial capacities, most memorably, Minister for Health under late President Mills.
Currently, Hon. Bagbin is the Second Deputy Speaker of Parliament and is also a leading contender for the flagbearership of the NDC in the build-up to the 2020 elections.
The Nadowli MP’s fierce track record as an incorruptible man, who at a point decried corruption in Parliament, is admired by many.
Tema Mantse’s recommendation of Hon. Bagbin for a national award comes in the wake of outpouring of admiration for the Nadowli Kaleo MP. Regent of Dagbon and Acting President of the Dagbon Traditional Council, Kampakuya-Naa Yakubu Abdulai, recently said Mr Bagbin had been a quintessential Northerner for holding up the Northern image of incorruptibility.
Recently, Torgbui Datsomor Adelashie ll, a prominent Anlo Chief based in Tema, also backed the idea of government honouring Bagbin. “I admire him because since he entered Parliament 25 years ago, he has been frank, truthful and fearless; very God-fearing and governance savvy.”
Within the NDC itself, Mr Bagbin’s reputation is a source of attraction in the race for flagbearership of the party.
A group of party cadres last week said Mr Bagbin would be the best Presidential Candidate for the NDC in 2020.