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Confusion erupts over Presiding Member election in Sawla-Tuna-Kalba District

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There was confusion and bouts of controversies as Assembly Members in the Sawla-Tuna-Kalba District of the Savannah Region, failed again to elect a Presiding Member after meeting on 3rd September, 2020 at the Sawla District Assembly Conference Hall.

Per the standing orders of Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDCE’s), the assembly is permitted to call for new contestants to file for the position of the Presiding Member after three rounds of voting and not getting a Presiding member.

Two Assemblymen on the District previously contested in the Sawla-Tuna-Kalba District for two rounds of voting but one stepped down meaning the one remaining should have been the sole candidate to contest but the District Chief Executive (DCE) for the Sawla-Tuna-Kalba District Mr Lawal Tamimu allegedly backed a Government appointee to contest for the Presiding Member creating a crisis and the situation resulted in most assembly members expressing their disapproval.

Most of the Assembly members protested for what they said was against the standing orders after a government appointee was brought in to contest for the Presiding Member position of the Sawla-Tuna-Kalba District when the two who contested previously had not gone for a third-round after which both would have stepped down if there was no winner.

Bole based Nkilgi FM spoke to the Assemblyman for Kawuribi Electoral area in Sawla town Alhaji Abudulai Mohammed and he said it is a sad situation for the Sawla-Tuna-Kalba District because since they were voted and inaugurated almost a year ago, they have not had a single sitting because they are yet to elect a Presiding Member.

He said the stepping down of the Assemblyman for Tuna West Hon Hudu Adam should have paved way for the Assemblyman of the Goyiri Electoral Area Hon Jopitey to be elected as the Presiding Member but the Sawla DCE has decided to push a Government appointee to contest sparking controversy between him and the New Patriotic Party (NPP) Executives in the Sawla-Tuna-Kalba Constituency as well as most of the Assembly Members.

A livid Hon Alhaji Abudulai Mohammed said the absence of a Presiding Member for the Sawla-Tuna-Kalba District has made the district a “ghost house” and has accused the DCE of politicizing the election of a Presiding Member. He disclosed that the Assemblyman of the Goyiri Electoral Area Hon Jopitey has National Democratic Congress (NDC) leaning hence the DCE using tricks to ensure he never becomes the Presiding Member.

The Assemblyman for Kawuribi Electoral area in Sawla town said they had a press briefing after they were told to disperse and have given the DCE for the Sawla-Tuna-Kalba District one week to convene another meeting or else they will pass a vote of “No confidence” on him because the Sawla-Tuna-Kalba District is lagging behind in terms of development.

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