Dr Owusu Afriyie Akoto gets Ministerial appointment

The President-elect, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has hinted that Dr Owusu Afriyie Akoto who is currently the Member of Parliament for Kwadaso in Kumasi, and the Minority Spokesperson on Agriculture would be his Minister of Agriculture.

Nana Addo gave the hint of Dr Akoto as his pick for the Agriculture portfolio when he met a delegation of some Zongo chiefs at his Nima Residence in Accra.

“The Kumasi people will recognise Amadu Baba of Kwame Nkrumah’s time, he had a great friend in the Asantehene’s Kyeame, (senior linguist), Baffour Akoto, this is his son who is the Member of Parliament for Kwadaso today, Dr Owusu Afriyie Akoto.”

“He is our spokesperson on Agriculture and if the Parliament will pass him, he is likely to be the Minister of Agriculture,” Nana Addo told the Zongo chiefs.

The president-elect, who would be sworn into office on January 7, 2017 has been giving hints of who would be part of his cabinet.

He has already named Mr Kwadwo Alan Kyeremateng as his choice for Trade and Industry during a meeting with the Private Enterprise Foundation (PEF).

The 57-year-old Dr Akoto is a farmer himself with plantations at Manso Nkwanta in Ashanti. He is the CEO of Plantation Resources Company Limited and holds a PhD in Agricultural Economics from Cambridge University, UK.

As the son of the late Baffour Akoto, who was himself deeply involved in the National Liberation Movement (NLM) during Nkrumah’s time, Dr Akoto first launched his Parliamentary bid in Kumasi in year 2000 at the then Bantama constituency challenging Dr Richard Anane who was seeking re-election after his first term.

When Dr Akoto was unsuccessful at the primary to run on the ticket of the NPP, he went independent and lost the Parliamentary election to Dr Anane.

In 2004, the then Bantama constituency (Florida) was divided into three – Nhyiaeso, Kwadaso and Bantama and Dr Akoto attempted the bid at Kwadaso but lost to Hilda Josephine Addo at the NPP primary.

He relaunched his campaign in 2008 and defeated Hilda Addo who failed the re-election bid.

In 2015 however, the new entrant and young lecturer, Dr Kwadwo Nuamah defeated him.

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For the two terms that Dr Akoto was in Parliament – 2009 to 2012 and 2013 to 2016, he served as the Minority Spokesperson on Agriculture.