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Full MP Details
 

Arthur, Nana Ato Stephen Eng. (Dr)

Constituency: K.E.E.A
Region: Central Region
Party: NPP
Occupation/Profession: Engineer
Parliamentary Seat: minority

Date of birth: December 24, 1961
Hometown: Abrem Berase, Central Region
Highest Education: PhD (Development Studies, Centre for Development Research, University of Bonn, Germany, 2012
Last Employment: DCE (KEEA), 2001-2005, Deputy Central Regional Minister (2006-2009)
Marital status: married (with three children)
Religion: Christianity (catholic)
Votes obtained: 22,151 votes out of the 58,049 valid votes cast =38.16%. others: Dr. Ato Quarshie (IND) 15,561=26.81%, Dr Joseph Samuel Annan (NDC) 13,962=24.05%, Doreen Thomas Manieson (PPP) 6,233=10.74% and Okatakyu Nana Kwaeku Ackon (DPP) 142=0.24%.

 

 

 BACKGROUND HISTORY

Found in the Central Region of Ghana, the people of the Komenda-Edina-Eguafo-Abrem constituency (KEEA) have been in existence for over seven hundred (700) years. It is made of four distinct traditional areas or states, which have been put together to constitute a political constituency called Komenda-Edina-Eguafo-Abrem constituency.  
 
The constituency has a chequered history and a rich cultural heritage.  The drama of European colonization and its attendant concomitants were initiated from the Central Region and particularly the KEEA constituency.  The constituency has a fantastic assemblage of culture.  Elmina, the constituency capital, prides itself as the first point of call by the Europeans on their exploration tour of Africa.   
 
It had the first contact with the Portuguese in 1471.   The oldest Castle in Africa, south of the Sahara, the Elmina Castle, (built by the Portuguese in 1482), is located in the constituency. 
 
Originally, the European commercial interest in the Gold Coast was the gold deposits, alongside products like pepper and ivory. By the end of the 17th century, a new type of trade was established on the Gold Coast, the trade in slaves for the plantations in the New World. Elmina became an important distribution point for the slaves, which were brought from the hinterland, to be shipped to the Americas. 
 
The Castle was turned into a temporary prison for many thousands of slaves. The slave trade, which lasted until the early 19th century, marks a dark spot in the history of many European countries in Ghana. In a sense, the forts and castles lining the Ghanaian coast, including St. George d’Elmina stand as monuments for the slave trade in all its cruelty. 
 
Many people, among whom a large number of African Americans, visit the castle of St. George d’Elmina in remembrance of the slave-trading era and its consequences.
 
CULTURE,FESTIVALS AND CUSTOMS
 
The KEEA constituency has some unique cultural festivals, notable among them, Edina Bronya and Bakatue, and Nyeyi. These festivals attract a large number of visitors from home and abroad, including tourists from Europe and America.
 
Edina Bronya
The Bakatue Festival celebrates the “opening” of Benya River, and is thus closely connected to the main economic activity of fishing. Edina Bronya is also called the Elmina Christmas. Bronya is actually a Libation Day during which ancestors are remembered. 
 
The Edina Bronya festival is connected to the annual New Year festivities, which the Elmina people celebrated together with the Dutch. It takes place from the first Thursday to Sunday of the calendar year.  The traditional ceremonies preceding this observance of the festival includes the exhibition of the Aketekete war drum captured from the Fantis in 1868.
 
On the Wednesday before the Thursday, the No. 7 Asafo Company perform some rites in the Benya Lagoon.  On the Thursday, families gather in their ancestral homes and give food and drinks to the departed in ceremonies called Akor or Akordo-korye do (i.e a place that we reunite, settle all disputes and become one, place where the living and the dead become one). 
 
It is after the Akor ceremonies that merriment starts because all citizens of the town come home.  These days the weekend of that Thursday is used for a durbar of chiefs, which is also very attractive to visitors.
 
Bakatue
This is a festival celebrated to commemorate the founding of the town. It is celebrated either on the last Tuesday of June or the first Tuesday of July. The day is consecrated to the tutelary deity of Elmina called Benya.  The celebration is synchronised with the last battle with the Fantis on the 26th of May 1868 and the harvest and admission of new crops into the market.
 
The rites of this ceremony cover six weeks during which the Elmina State prohibits fishing in the Benya Lagoon and all forms of noise making and merriment in the town.  Further, lying-in-state of the dead is forbidden. Fish of herrings and crops sales are also forbidden in the markets.
 
On each of the three Monday nights preceding the festival, fetish priests and the people assemble before the Benya Shrine for  Akom play during which oracles are consulted. ( Domo, a special seasonal fetish dance at which the Benya oracle is consulted. Akom was the common fetish dance played on Sunday afternoons.  It is no longer played).
 
These exercises culminate on the sixth Tuesday when the rites reach a climax. The ceremony itself involves feeding the supposed 77 gods in Elmina with 154 eggs and mashed yam in palm oil by throwing them into the Benya Lagoon. A cast net is used to fish from the lagoon 3 consecutive times and at the end of each round musketry is fired.
 
To the visitors the ceremony is captivating because of the social events accompanying them. These include a ground procession, a durbar of chiefs, drumming, regattas, various other competitions, dinner parties and ball dancing.
 
Open Spaces And Recreation
Open spaces can generally be of two types: open spaces that are incidental, and open spaces deliberately created and safeguarded for recreation or some other purpose. Open spaces fulfil an important role in the usually crowded urban environment, such as in Elmina, Komenda Abrem Agona, Eguafo and Berase Townships. 
 
Many areas earmarked as open spaces, some of which could be used as recreational grounds have been used for other development purposes, either as residential or business.  Open spaces in towns in the district are mainly incidental, or occur as compounds or forecourts of churches and schools. Most open spaces are covered with dirt; larger spaces usually serve as community playing fields and smaller ones as community gathering areas (e.g. for funerals).
 
Public spaces are predominantly dried, dusty, and have bare patches, where the combination of land degradation and human traffic precludes the growth of any vegetation.  It would be advisable to specifically identify open spaces in the big towns as points for relaxation, upgrading the physical surfaces, introducing some vegetative cover and providing basic sanitary services.MAJOR 
 
TOURIST ATTRACTIONS IN ELMINA
 
St. George’s Castle
On the 19th of January, 1482, King Joao of Portugal sent a fleet of 12 ships with building materials to Elmina. The fleet was under the command of Don Diego d’Azambuja, who secured a plot from king Kwamena Ansa of Elmina to build the St. George’s Castle. The area given was covered by the rock Kokobo, where there was also the abandoned bastion de France, a fort built by the French in 1383. 
 
The Portuguese who built the St. George’s Castle occupied it for 155 years. During this period Christopher Colombus anchored in Elmina for some days on his expedition to discover America in 1492. It is on the site of the St. George’s Castle that the first Catholic mass was celebrated on Elmina soil leading to the incorporation of a catholic church in the St George’s Castle. During the Portuguese period the St. George’s Castle was used for trading in Gold. 
 
On the 27th of August, 1637, the Dutch defeated the Portuguese and dislodged them from the St. George’s Castle. The Dutch expanded the Castle. Trade was still centred on gold until the Castle became important for the slave trade, which sent many Africans to the Americas. On the 6th of April, 1872, the Dutch sold their possessions including the St. Georges Castle to the British, much to the disappointment of the people of Elmina. 
 
The events of it led to the deportation of King Kobena Gya to the Sierra Leone for opposing the British take-over. The St. George’s Castle is famous for its unique architecture and,strength of a building.. Today, the Castle is open to the public on admission charges and houses a small museum. Exhibits found in the museum are mainly on the culture, tradition and environment of the people of Elmina. 
 
The Castle is the most visited site in Elmina. In the year 2000, the Castle attracted a total of 101,322 thousand visitors, (see charts) Fort Coenraadsburg on St. Jago Hill The site of Fort Coenraadsburg in Elmina was originally the place where the Portuguesebuilt the St. James Church in Elmina. The chief of Eguafo was baptised in this church in 1482.
 
When the Dutch defeated the Portuguese and dislodged them from the St. George’s Castle in 1637 the Dutch transformed the nuns of the St. James Church into Fort Coenraadsburg. A garrison of soldiers were placed in and around this fort to offset any attacks. Fort St. Jago is unique for its architectural beauty and the panorama it offers over almost the whole township of Elmina.
 
The Traditional Buildings (Asafo Posts)
The Asafo is the military organisation of the Elmina State. The Asafo Posts are the meeting places of the members of the Asafo or technically the headquarters or barracks of the various units of the Asafo. There are 10 Asafo Companies. The Asafo Post of three of these companies arouses the visitor’s interest. 
 
These are the Wobil (Number 4), Akyemfo (Number 2) and Abese (Number 5) Asafo Post. These Posts are buildings with images erected in such a manner to depict the roles and achievements of the Asafo Companies. The images include the statues of Adam and Eve, policemen, airplanes and gunboats. The Number 5 represents the navy wing of the military. 
 
The No. 5 is a ship with sailors. The number 2 represents the air force and advance/spy party. The Post has aeroplanes and eagles to depict that role. The number 4 represents the infantry and the beginning and nucleus of the army. Although the outside of an Asafo Post is an imposing presence and serves as a rallying point for the meetings and rituals, the inside is simply used to store the company’s drums and flags. 
 
These buildings could easily be used as museums. Tourists could pay an entry fee and learn about the companies’ history, see pictures and flags and possibly buy souvenirs and or refreshment. The revenue generated could be used to employ young members of the companies and maintain the building.
 
The Dutch Cemetery
The Dutch Cemetery had its main vault constructed in 1806. Meant to be a final resting place for Dutch settlers and their descendants, it became the place for burying important people in Elmina. It is a place where European government administrators, traditional rulers of Elmina and Church Missionaries were buried. About 87 graves are identifiable in that cemetery now. 
 
The first Vice Chancellor of the Kwome Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, R.P Baffour, a native of Elmina, and a major benefector of the town, was the last to be buried in the cemetery in 1993. Today, the Dutch Cemetery is a National Monument under the jurisdiction of the Ghana Museums and Monuments Board.
 
The Government Gardens
This used to be a splendid park established by the Dutch situated at Nyanta area in Elmina. Unfortunately the Gardens are no more due to neglect. Yet in it stands a very significant Watchtower dating from the times that the Dutch were in Elmina.
 
The St. Joseph’s Hill
The St. Joseph’s Hill was originally known as the Schomerus Hill, named after a former Dutch governor in Elmina. When it was the Schomerus Hill, there stood fort Schomerus on it. A garrison of soldiers was also stationed in and around this fort to protect the Dutch from attacks. 
 
The transfer of Dutch properties to the English in 1872 made the presence of the garrison unnecessary. The Catholic Church applied for this hill and  it was given for the construction of a church building in 1882. 
 
Materials from the ruins of the Fort Schomerus was used by the Catholic Church to construct the following historical buildings on the Schomerus Hill, the oldest Catholic Church building in Ghana (1890), the first and oldest Catholic mission house and seminary in Ghana (1886), first Catholic Girls’ school and convent in Ghana (1889) and the first Catholic Boys’ school in Ghana.
 
Shrines Of Deities
Two shrines arouse interest. The first is the shrine of Benya, the titular god of Elmina. Situated on the bank of the river, Benya, this shrine is made of a dome of thatch. Ordinarily the shrine may not command attention, but it does so during the main festival of the town, Bakatue, when the activities in connection with the festival are performed before this shrine.
 
The Ntona Shrine (or St. Anthony Shrine) is situated at Bantoma. Although unimposing, it has a historical and spiritual significance. The St. Anthony or Ntona Shrine contains a statue of St. Anthony, which the Portuguese left behind when the Dutch displaced them in Elmina in 1637. It was worshiped as a deity, using mimicry of catholic rites.
 
The strange thing about this deity is that native priests become dispossessed when they go near this shrine. Privately-owned historic dwellings (19th Century merchant houses) The private homes of the people of Elmina made Elmina the first town of real architectural significance in the Gold Coast (now Ghana). The building boom of which the remnant are still visible along Liverpool Street, started in the 1840s. Rich merchants built houses for themselves and their families. 
 
These Buildings were constructed with rocks and lime plaster. Also imported bricks from Europe were used for door and window arches and cornices.The ground floors of the merchant houses were used for storing goods. Today, they are used as shops. The upper floors served as residences. Other parts of the buildings or extensions were used as dwellings for extended families, servants and domestic slaves. Historical dwellings in Elmina comprise a major potential tourist attraction and can also  be used as tourist facilities.
 
Churches
The Methodist Chapel at Chapel Square, together with the adjacent Nana Etsiapa Hall, were constructed in the 1850s and 1860s, on the initiative of a group of local Euro-African families, lead by women. There was a strong desire among the local elite to establish a missionary protestant church that was separate from the Dutch church in the Castle. 
 
With money of their own and a subvention from the Dutch King William III, the church was built. In general agreement one chose to make it a Methodist church, as the Methodist already had a smoothly running operation on the Gold Coast and were also present in Elmina with a guest house and a small private chapel at Akotobinsin. Since its inception, the Methodist Chapel stands as a landmark in Elmina Town. The interior shows plaques with the names of important Elminians, many of whom bear Dutch names.
 
The Coman-Catholic Church of St. Joseph, on Mission Hill, was started in the 1880s by missionaries from the Society of Missionaries into Africa (SMA). The Catholic Mission in Elmina was the first of its sort in West-Africa. The Catholic Mission attracted many Elminians, as the population saw the church as a viable alternative to the Methodist Church, which was more and more identified with the unwished-for British rule. The church, mission buildings, and school stand as an historical landmark on St. Joseph’s Hill. The complex also houses a small historical museum.
 
Edina Bronya
Edina Bronya is also called the Elmina Christmas. It is observed on the first Thursday of the calendar year. Bronya is actually a Libation Day during which ancestors are remembered. The traditional ceremonies preceding this observance of the festival includes the exhibition of the Akefekete war drum captured from the Fantis in 1868.
 
On the Wednesday before the Thursday, the No. 7 Asafo Company performs some rites in the Benya Lagoon. On the Thursday, families gather in their ancestral homes and give food and drinks to the departed in ceremonies called Akor. It is after the Akor  ceremonies that merriment starts because citizens of the town all come home. These days the weekend of that Thursday is used for a durbar of chiefs, which is also very attractive to visitors. 
 
Bakatue
This is a festival celebrated to commemorate the founding of the town. It is celebrated either on the last Tuesday of June or the first Tuesday of July. The day is consecrated to the tutelar deity of Elmina called Benya. The celebration is synchronised with the last battle with the Fantis on the 26th of May 1868 and the harvest and admission of new  crops into the market.
 
The rites of this ceremony cover six weeks during which the Elmina State prohibits fishing in the Benya Lagoon and all forms of noise making and merriment in the town. Further lying-in-state of the dead is forbidden. Fish herrings and the sale of crops are also forbidden in the markets.  On each of the three Monday nights preceding the festival, fetish priests and the people assemble before the Benya Shrine for an Akan play during which oracles are consulted.
 
These exercises culminated the sixth Tuesday when the rites reach their climax. The ceremony itself involves feeding the supposed 77 gods in Elmina with 154 eggs and mashed yam in palm oil by sprinkling them into the Benya Lagoon. A cast net is used to fish from the lagoon three consecutive times and at the end of each round musketry is fired.
 
To the visitor the ceremony is captivating because of the social events accompanying them. These include a grand procession, a durbar of chiefs, drumming, regattas, various other competitions, dinner parties and a ball dancing. Election and installation of a chief or king unlike the other festivals is not an annual "affair. It takes luck to be a witness when it occurs.  
 
Tradition has preserved unimpaired the ancient ceremonial rites of election and installation of the chief. The office is considered sacred. The chief therefore, as head of the State, get "Nana" prefixed to his name in reverence. The emblems of the state for the king include a stool (believed to be possessed by the departed spirits of the traditional founder and successors), state umbrella, sword, palanquin, staff, bulrush hat, batakari (smock) and state jewels and cloths.
 
A chief is never pronounced dead but gone to a village for medical treatment in which circumstances the Tufohene acts. Burial of a dead chief is secret and is conducted by members of the royal household. For the election of a successor the Enyanpa Asafo (No.7) elects one in its consultative capacity. The chief elect is presented to the Supifi (generals of the Asafo) for vetting and acceptance The chief is confined during which he is given further training about execution of his functions.
 
The installation ceremony begins at dawn with ceremonial cleansing baths in the pools of Nkonduamu and Atradarmu, and adorned with jewellery and beads of his royal office, given sandals, headgear and bulrush hat with a garland of mistletoe around his neck. At sunrise, the chief takes oaths of office at a site called Dapatan to the Asafo and people with the state sword. An acclamation breaks forth and is responded by an exciting ovation from the crowd.
 
The chief is then conducted to the Ntona (St. Anthony) Shrine for a religious ceremony performed by a privileged sect. It is only when he steps from the Ntona Shrine that the new chief can step into a palanquin and start a procession through the principal streets of the town stopping at sites recognised as abodes of deities. It is this procession, which is normally so colourful to the onlooker.
 
INVETMENT AND BUSINESS POTENTIALS
 
In the field of agriculture, the potential abounds for citrus, pineapple, sugarcane and vegetable growth and processing. There are large tracts of land suitable for all kinds of crops and fruits in the constituency. Sugarcane production is especially important in the constituency.
 
The defunct sugar factory at Komenda with a supporting land area of 1,000 hectares could be reactivated to provide the basis for the revival of the sugar industry in the country.
 
Small and medium size sugar mills could be established to produce sugar for local consumption. Citrus and pineapples could be processed into fruit juice, jam and marmalade. The land tenure system practised in the district is a combination of freehold and leasehold, and tenancy terms are very favourable. Fishing and fish processing are vigorously done in the constituency.
 
The second largest fishing port in the country is found in Elmina with over six hundred (600) canoes and fifty (50) in-shore vessels. The constituency contributes about fifteen per cent (15%) of the total fish output in the country. Fishes caught include herrings, mackerel, tuna, lobsters, shrimps and barracuda.  Investors could invest in fish canning, cold storage and preservation as well as boat building.
 
The defunct sugar factory at Komenda with a supporting land area of 1,000 hectares could be reactivated to provide the basis for the revival of the sugar industry in the country. Small and medium size sugar mills could be established to produce sugar for local consumption. Citrus and pineapples could be processed into fruit juice, jam and marmalade.
 
The land tenure system practised in the constituency is a combination of freehold and leasehold, and tenancy terms are very favourable. Fishing and fish processing are vigorously done in the constituency. The second largest fishing port in the country is found in Elmina with over six hundred (600) canoes and fifty (50) in-shore vessels.
 
The constituency contributes about fifteen per cent (15%) of the total fish output in the country. Fishes caught include herrings, mackerel, tuna, lobsters, shrimps and barracuda.
 
Investors could invest in fish canning, cold storage and preservation as well as boat building. The Elmina Fishing Harbour could also be expanded to take more boats and canoes. There is vast potential for salt production in the constituency.
 
LOCATION AND SIZE
 
The Municipal is bounded on the south by the Atlantic Ocean (Gulf of Guinea), the east by the Cape Coast Municipality, the north by the Twifo Hemang - Lower Denkyira District and the west by the Mpohor - Wassa East District.Perched between longitude 1° 20° West and 1° 40
 
TOPOLOGY AND DRAINAGE
 
The landscape of the constituency is generally undulating, dominated by batholiths. Along the coastal zone is a series of lagoons and wetlands which include the Benya, Brenu, Susu, Abrobi and Ankwanda. The slopes and hills are steep in inland areas. In between the hills are valleys with various streams which drain into the coastal lagoons and the Atlantic Ocean. These streams include the Iture and Ante in the west and the Udu and Suruwi in the east.
 
CLIMATE AND VEGETATION
The vegetation varies according to the rainfall pattern. There is the coastal scrub and grassland type with scattered trees trading into the coastal savannah forest with a variety of timber species of economic value.The coast itself is mainly characterised by mangrove and palm fronds. The constituency is generally humid with the 30 kilometre coastline forming part of the littoral anomalous zone of Ghana and experiencing less rainfall than the interior.
 
GEOLOGY AND SOIL
Mainly the Birimanian rock type consisting of schist and granites as well as pegmatite underlies a large proportion of the constituency. On the slopes of the hills, the overburden soils are sandy clayey soils while the valleys have gravely sandy colluvium.
        

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