Source: Daily Graphic Ghana - The newly elected New Patriotic Party (NPP) Parliamentary Candidate for Kwabre East in the Ashanti Region, Ms Francisca Oteng-Mensah, 22, has expressed surprise that some people think she lacks experience due to her age.
The age and level of experience of Ms Oteng-Mensah has come under close scrutiny by political pundits and critics.
While some have argued that she lacks experience due to her age, others have thrown their weight behind the daughter of the Chief Executive Officer of the Angel Group of Companies in Kumasi, Dr Kwaku Oteng.
Responding to her critics, the former student of the St Rose’s Senior High School (SHS) at Akwatia in the Eastern Region expressed surprise about such views, stressing her firm conviction that she had been groomed for the MP position, should she be given the nod.
“I started working in my father’s company when I was in Class Six. So when people ask of experience, I really don’t know what they are looking for. At the KNUST, I’ve also held a lot of positions in various fields, which has boosted my confidence and experience level. So I don’t know the kind of experience people are looking for,” she emphasised.
The 22-year-old second year law student of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), was speaking in a monitored interview on Oman Fm on Wednesday.
‘I won the election fairly’
Ms Oteng-Mensah defeated the incumbent MP, Mr Kofi Frempong, in the Kwabre East Constituency primaries held last Saturday.
Her victory is seen by some as one that was made easy because of her father’s wealth and personality.
“One important thing is that no matter how wealthy your parents may be, they cannot buy wisdom and knowledge for you. I can take hard decisions and plan for myself, and that is what I’m proud of,” she stated confidently.
She, therefore, dismissed assertions that the elections were not won fairly, noting that her message was well understood and accepted by the delegates.
‘My message stood out’
The outspoken and vibrant lady stated that she crafted her message in such a way that it reached every member of the constituency, “for them to see that I was part of them in their daily activities.”
“I ran a door-to-door campaign, one devoid of personality attacks and visited a lot of the delegates on their farms to interact with and know their concerns.
In effect, I ensured that the constituents were part of me in their daily activities. This was what made me stand out and won the primaries,” Ms Oteng-Mensah stated.
Ms Oteng-Mensah is on record to have promised during her campaign to offer three months of her salary annually to the party if she becomes an MP.
She pledged to push the agenda of the School Feeding Programme (SFP) when voted into power as an MP in the 2016 elections.
According to the 22-year-old lady, the SFP was one of the many interventions that could be broadened to reach a good number of Ghanaian children and the youth in general.
She indicated that the programme went through a chain of events before it reached the final consumer, an indication that it met a lot of needs in society.
“In addition to providing food for our children, the SFP creates employment opportunities for farmers, including the youth. It is for this reason that I believe the programme should be given a lot of boost, and I’ll push such an agenda when voted into power,” she said.
Another area of focus, she said, was to advocate the re-introduction of the teacher-trainee allowance, which has been scrapped by the Mahama-led administration.
“Scrapping the allowance really affects trainees who might not be able to pay their fees, especially those from poor backgrounds,” she stated.
Even though she could not disclose fully her political career, Ms Oteng-Mensah indicated that she was hopeful that she would go higher.
At the moment, Ms Oteng-Mensah said she was focused on serving her constituents and the nation at large.
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