General News of Saturday, 22 December 2012
Managing Editor of the Insight Newspaper Kwesi Pratt says he does not foresee the courts invalidating the December 2012 elections results following claims of fraud by the biggest opposition party.
He said he is very doubtful that any judge worth his sort will overturn the Electoral Commissioner’s declaration of President John Mahama winner of the polls.
The NPP is threatening to go to court over what it says were rigged elections but the Insight Editor who was contributing to discussions on Radio Gold’s Alhaji and Alhaji programme Saturday, described as comical the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) allegation.
Kwesi Pratt insists the NPP has no shred of evidence and are only holding the nation to ransom while inciting their followers to create tensions.
“It has been 14 long days since the elections were held…and they haven’t taken one step. If you ask them, they say they are still looking for the evidence.
“What does that tell you? It means they don’t have the evidence. Because if they have the evidence they will not be looking for it. And if they don’t have the evidence why the hell are they wasting our time?” he quizzed.
“I know as a fact the elections were not rigged. And in fact I can state with confidence that this is perhaps the freest election that we have held since 1992…But they [NPP] have a right to believe in their fathoms, they have a right to claim what does not exist…”
Mr Pratt also took a swipe at some leaders of the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) who he said were jittery and have bought into the NPP’s ‘lies’ about having impeccable evidence to prove the alleged electoral fraud.
“Ye men of little faith”, he described them, saying “some of these people in the leadership of the [party], they are not worth anything.”
He called for a revolution to cleanse the party of such ‘cowards’ and ‘dead woods’ because democracies are built with strong parties.
Touching on the possible outcome of the NPP’s case in court, the Editor maintained that “I don’t see any judge, worth their legal education, any judge worth the moral principles that they’ve been brought up with and so forth, any judge worthy of the titles and the gowns they wear declaring this election null and void.”
“I don’t see it happening but let them go to court, it is their right to go to court.’
Shot themselves in the foot
As far as he is concerned, the NPP is solely responsible for their defeat. By the conduct of their campaigns in the run up to the polls, he said, the party shot itself badly in the foot.
For instance, Mr Pratt said their free Senior High School (SHS) promise –which was their main campaign message was a fraudulent one which was not going to completely eliminate the financial barrier to acquiring education at that level.
In the party’s manifesto, Mr Pratt said the NPP explained free SHS to mean the exemption of the payment of ten categories of fees including tuition. But “four of those items listed were already free including tuition. So what they had on offer was only six items” like library fees and others, some of which he said cost parents only 2 cedis per term.
“So if you sat down and made the calculations on the basis of the promises that they themselves had made in their manifesto”, Mr Prat continued, “day students were only going to get a relief of not more that GHS 19 per term. Boarding students were going to get a maximum relief of GHS 250…it meant that parents were still going to pay at least GHS 900 to GHS 1000 a term.”
“So everybody knew that this free SHS education was a fraud and yet there were leaders in the NPP who believed that they could get votes on the basis of this fraud…”
He added that the NPP, instead of taking a cue from mistakes they committed during the 2008 elections - as recorded by a leading member of the party, Arthur Kwabena Kennedy in his book [Chasing the Elephant into the Bush], persisted in committing the same blunder.