Peter Toobu shock, big wins headline NDC primaries in Upper West

Not many thought Superintendent Peter Toobu (retired), stood the chance of upstaging a political colossus in the person of Joseph Yieleh Chireh. Some thought it was going to be a close contest even if the retired police officer was to win.

The incumbent, Joseph Yieleh Chireh, was in his usual jovial mood in his interaction with the delegates when the polls started.

Little did the four-time MP know that his campaign and for that matter, his career as an MP for Wa West in the Upper West Region, was on the shakiest ground.

The former Health Minister since 2004, had contested and comfortably won the Wa West constituency seat for the National Democratic Congress (NDC).

The toughest contest for him, came in 2015 when he managed a win against Faruk Bandanaa in an election that brought deep-seated division in the party.

However, Saturday’s primary was a different ball game when he came against a man who had been in the Ghana Police Service for over two decades and served four Inspectors-General of Police.

The 51-year-old Peter Toobu, a political rookie, started nurturing the ambition to unseat the veteran about a decade ago. He retired from the Ghana Police Service in May and joined the political wagon of the NDC.

Toobu polled 775 out of a voting population of 1,140 while the veteran managed 314 votes. This is a staggering ‘coup’ against a man who got to the political limelight 36 years ago as first Upper West Region Secretary for the Provisional National Defence Council (PNDC).

Supt. Peter Toobu was still in secondary school Form One.

Joseph Yieleh Chireh was not around for concessionary speech. It seems the music has stopped for the man who is used to dancing traditional Bina during public gatherings.

Upset in Jirapa

There was defeat for another incumbent, the Parliamentarian for Jirapa constituency, where two former bedfellows pitched their strengths against each other.

Incumbent Dr. Francis Bawaana Dakurah, came face-to-face with his former campaign strategist and District Chief Executive in the John Mahama administration, Cletus Seidu Dapilaa.

L-R: Dr. Francis Dakura and Cletus Dapilaa

Cletus successfully truncated Dr. Dakurah’s second term bid by polling 429 votes against 296 polled by his former boss.

Four other contestants in the race did not do much.

Big wins in Wa Central, Nadowli-Kaleo & Lawra

However, in the Wa Central constituency, there was a landslide victory for incumbent MP, Dr. Rashid Pelpuo.

He went into the contest knowing well that the three other candidates standing against him have an equal chance of securing the sole ticket to represent the people of Wa Central on the ticket of the NDC.

At the end of voting, sorting and collation, Dr. Pelpuo polled 787 out of the 1,391votes.

There were also wins for 36-year-old health administrator, Anthony Suma and former Upper West Regional Minister, Bede Ziedeng, in the Nadowli-Kaleo and Lawra constituencies, respectively.

Source: Ghana | Joy News | Rafiq Salaam

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