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General News of Thursday, 17 October 2013

Source: The Al-Hajj

Jake, Sir John on way out

Just as the current leadership of the New Patriotic Party agonizingly badmouthed their predecessors and clothed them with inefficiency apparels to demonstrate how their indiscreet management style sent the party into opposition in the 2008 elections, a new breed of enthusiastic heavyweights nursing hopes to occupy momentous positions in the party, are also playing the same tune on a refined macabre drum to oust them.

Whiles National Chairman of the NPP, Jake Otanka Obetsebi Lamptey, his loudmouth General Secretary, Kwadwo Owusu Afriyie also known in political circles as Sir John, in their bid to attract sympathy and support for their re-election have purposefully tried to tie their fate to that of the party’s 2012 defeated Presidential candidate, other leading members aspiring to replace them, who are said to be enjoying considerable support from grassroots within the party, have also intensified their campaign to compel them to take French-leave.

Having woefully failed to return the party back to power in the 2012 elections; a situation not even the marathon eight month spurious election petition could secure them, the positions of Mr. Obetsebi Lamptey and Sir John, who have been accused of trying to foist an early congress on the party to elect a flagbearer for obvious reason, have come under severe contention due to what many said was occasioned by their unwise managerial skills.

For the National Chairman position alone, Mr. Fred Oware who is the 1st vice Chairman of the party not aligned to any faction, Mr. Stephen Ntim, a Bawumia loyalist and onetime national chairman aspirant, and Mr. Paul Afoko, a leading member of the party with strong links to ex-president Kufuor have all announced their preparedness to boot-out the incumbent National Chairman, Jake.

Among the four aspirants, Mr. Paul Afoko is said to have taken a commanding lead with his “NEW PLAN for POWER” (NPP) slogan, but party insiders say Mr. Stephen Ntim can pull a surprise due to his long standing service to the party and his seeming popularity among the grass root of the party.

In the case of Sir John whose position nearly became vacant following calls on him to resign due to his shameful conduct during the election petition hearing, out of which he was convicted for criminal contempt, Mr. Kwabena Agyepong, onetime flag bearer aspirant, Alan loyalist and a former presidential spokesperson to Mr. Kufuor and Mr. Yaw Buabeng Asamoah, a failed parliamentary aspirant and member of the party’s communication team and Nana Akomea, a former parliamentary candidate of the party and the Director of Communication of the last election have all sworn heaven and earth to bring the tenure of NPP’s discredited General Secretary to an end by showing Sir John the exit.

Kwabena Agyepong, according to pundits is the favorite among the contenders due to his astute communication mettle, followed by Mr. Yaw Buabeng Asamoah whose role as deputy spokesperson for the party’s legal team during the election petition hearing is said to have added some shine to his political image.

Already, all the aspirants have devised crafty strategies to outsmart each other with some employing the services of youth groups to be flying their credentials and also shooting down their opponents, particularly the incumbent occupants.

In what appears to be consensus among the aspirants scheming to grab the top positions, The Al-Hajj has gathered that there is an operation “get rid of current executives”, particularly the National Chairman and General Secretary, to the extent that, in the event the race gets tougher, the aspirants will gang up to dislodge the incumbents.

A leading member of the NPP recently told this paper that “if we are unsuccessful in our attempts to kick out the current executives, as for Sir John, we will do all we can to kick him out because he has been of a liability to the party than an asset and his continuous stay in office will keep us in opposition for another painful period.”