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General News of Saturday, 24 November 2012

Source: Daily Guide

Hassan Ayariga joins NDC?

The level of the alleged flirtation of the People’s National Convention (PNC) flagbearer, Hassan Ayariga, with the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) is said to have assumed an alarming proportion as he has reportedly been seen distributing NDC T-shirts.

According to Atik Mohammed, the PNC’s policy analyst, in one northern town about two weeks ago, party supporters approached Mr. Ayariga in his hotel for the PNC campaign T-shirts. Mr Ayariga reached for a pile of T-shirts only for them to turn out to be boldly embossed with President Mahama, the NDC flag bearer’s pictures.

The policy analyst told DAILY GUIDE on Friday that a female party supporter alerted some executives of the PNC about the anomalous situation.

According to him, Mr. Ayariga was confronted by party people but he denied and rather turned the heat on the PNC’s General Secretary, Bernard Monarh, saying he was rather the one distributing the NDC T-shirts.

When contacted, special aide to Mr. Ayariga, Adams Akani, said, “This is false allegations, let’s just dismiss it, it is not true.”

But when this paper explained to him that his boss was alleged to have blamed Bernard Monarh for the NDC T-shirts, he excused himself, saying he was going to get confirmation from Mr. Ayariga.

Attempts to reach him afterwards proved futile as he was not picking his calls.

DAILY GUIDE reached Mr. Monarh on telephone who denied ever sharing NDC paraphernalia. “I have no idea what you are talking about…I know the flagbearer has printed T-shirts of his own; I know he has distributed T-shirts of his own, I am unaware my flagbearer would go and distribute T-shirts for another political party,” the PNC General Secretary explained.

Mr. Monarh, who is standing for a parliamentary seat on the PNC ticket, said those allegations were just a clever ploy to distract him. “I do not want to be distracted by people who are not committed to the cause of our party.”

Deeper Conspiracy

Atik Mohammed and a bulk of the PNC executives are convinced that the complicity of their flagbearer runs deeper than merely distributing T-Shirts. On Thursday, a section of the party’s executive staged a press conference to register its displeasure at the conduct of Mr. Ayariga who it accused of being a ‘puppet’ of the NDC.

At the just ended Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) presidential debate, Mr. Ayariga was publicly heard echoing the NDC’s education policy even though it contradicts the PNC’s free education policy in the party’s 2012 manifesto.

Atik told DAILY GUIDE that the PNC’s flagbearer had been bribed by the NDC with a Toyota Land Cruiser V8, Pick-ups, and Indian made SUV brand-Mahindra.

The PNC flagbearer is reported to have been given GH¢40,000 by a staunch NDC financier.

“I am extremely sure they [the cash and the cars] are from NDC. All these things go to confirm that he [Hassan Ayariga] is working for the NDC,” Mr. Mohammed told DAILY GUIDE.

When asked about the identity of the NDC front man handling Mr. Ayariga’s benefits from the NDC, Atik Mohammed would not disclose any names, but gave clues to the identity of the supposed handler of his party’s flagbearer.

According to him, the faceless financier had a huge agro-product company situated on the Accra-Tema Motorway. Also, he owns a radio station in Accra.

The description appears to fit David Lamptey, a staunch NDC financier and the owner of SIDALCO agro-products and radio XYZ.

The PNC flagbearer has been promised a ministerial post if the NDC wins the elections in December, Atik Mohammed told DAILY GUIDE.

It would be recalled that Bernard Mornah allegedly led Sekou Nkrumah, son of Ghana’s first president, to Mr Lamptey where he was offered a brand new car and wads of freshly mint dollars.

Sekou, who had resigned from the NDC at that time, allegedly turned down the offer because he considered it as bribe, especially when he had not done any job for the Sidalco boss.

Secret Meetings

A section of the PNC is certain that there is a deep conspiracy to annex the fortunes of the PNC to the NDC and has therefore vowed to resist it.

First of all, that group plans to boycott the campaign of the PNC flag-bearer. It would focus attention on parliamentary candidates.

Secondly, it is exploring ways of unseating Hassan Ayariga as the party’s flagbearer.

“Whatever it is, it exposes the internal collusion between Ayariga and other collaborators,” noted the troubled party’s policy analyst.

Atik Mohammed told DAILY GUIDE that they were aware that the alleged conspirators in the party were planning to stage a counter-press conference to rebut the allegations raised by key party officials in the Thursday press conference.

“I think it is important to stage a press conference or something to clear the doubt of the people,” Bernard Monarh told DAILY GUIDE.

But apparently, the press conference would target the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) whom he believes is unduly targeting the PNC flagbearer.

“I have told them [the NPP] and I have warned the General Secretary [of the NPP] that any such ugly pronouncement from them will attract a reciprocal response from us,” charged Mr. Monarh.

But Atik believes the secret meetings go beyond merely planning a counter-press conference.

He said the party was aware that the alleged conspirators were planning to declare their support for the NDC, should the December general elections go into a second round.

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