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General News of Friday, 23 July 2010

Source: Chronicle

Mills sparks commotion in NPP

THE endorsement of Mr. Alan Kyerematen by President Mills appears to have incurred the wrath of some leading members of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), who have accused the President of trying to meddle in their internal affairs. First to fire her salvo is a member of the Communication team of the party, Ms. Ursula Owusu, who has asked President Mills to leave the NPP alone since Alan does not need his endorsement. This was when The Chronicle reported in its Monday edition that President Mills has described Alan as a ‘gentle politician’. The Ghanaian Observer also reported yesterday that the Northern Regional vice chairman of the NPP, Alhaji Yahaya Iddi Rufai, advised President Mills to stay away from the internal politics of the NPP. “NPP as a party and for that matter delegates at our various polling stations are capable of deciding on who will lead the party to victory, for the next general elections slated for 2012,” the paper quoted the chairman as saying.

The latest to add his voice to condemnations of the President for his endorsement of Alan, is a former Greater Accra Regional Minister, Hon. Sheik I. C. Quaye. According to him, President John Evans Atta Mills is afraid of facing Nana Akufo-Addo in the 2012 general elections, hence his endorsement of Mr. John Alan Kyerematen, who is one of the front runners of the NPP presidential slot. He warned President Mills to be very careful in his attempt to meddle in the selection of a presidential candidate for the NPP. “Would you allow Atta Mills to choose the flag bearer for us? Atta Mills should be very careful,” he said. Sheikh I.C. Quaye was interacting with party delegates in Odododiodio constituency, to canvass for votes for Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo. Sheikh Quaye contended that “President Mills is lying. You know why? He is afraid of Akufo-Addo in the 2012 general elections. He cannot stand Nana Addo.” To the septuagenarian, President Mills could not match Akufo-Addo at the 2008 polls and that he garnered only 47% against Akufo-Addo who polled 49% of the votes, stressing that President Mills became the nation’s chief Executive with the support of Dr. Paa Kwesi Ndoum, the 2008 presidential candidate of the Convention People’s Party (CPP).

“The man that the NPP made an Assemblyman, a Member of Parliament and a Minister of State, eventually gave his party’s support to President Mills. That is why Ndoum is suffering today,” he claimed. To this end, he urged the delegates who would be voting on August 7, this year, to elect the flag bearer of their choice, and not follow the tacit endorsement of President Mills. The former Greater Accra Minister, under the erstwhile NPP regime, believes that it is only by electing Akufo-Addo that the NPP can regain political power in 2012. “I, together with all NPP Members of Parliament in the Greater Accra region have declared our support for Nana, because we believe that he has what it takes to win elections for us,” he said.

The NPP legislator for Ayawaso Central, in his submission, said he would put all his expertise and rich political experience to support Nana Addo. Nana Akufo-Addo, on the same platform accused the ruling NDC of collapsing the pro-poor policies introduced by the NPP administration under Mr. J.A. Kufuor. He mentioned that the NDC government had collapsed the National Health Insurance Scheme, the School feeding Programme, the National Youth Employment Programme and many others, to buttress his claim.

According to him, Ghanaians are crying for the return of the NPP to come and redeem them from the untold economic hardships that has been inflicted on them by the NDC administration. He said the ‘Better Ghana Agenda’ rolled out by the President and his Vice had failed, to the extent that prices of goods are sky-rocketing, with utility tariffs being increased arbitrarily.

Nana Addo, who was accompanied by party gurus like Mr. Lord Commey, former NPP National Organizer, Hon. Dan Kweku Botwe, Hon. Shirley Ayorkor Botwchey, Hon. Frema Opare, George Isaac Amo, Hon. Isaac Asiamah, Campaign Director, Prof. Mike Oquaye, the Second Deputy Speaker of parliament, Hon. Dominic Nitwul, Bimbilla MP and Mr. Boakye Agyarko Kyeremanteng among many other party bigwigs, promised to personally make logistics, money and other materials available to the party grass roots to enable them work effectively for the victory of the party.

Preaching on the need for unity, he admonished party members to make unity the cornerstone in their deliberations, in the supreme interest of the party. According to him, the party stands to win if all members are united with a common vision of returning to political power in 2012, adding that any attempt to create disunity among the party would not help the course of victory. Tasking the delegates to judiciously use their power to select a winnable candidate, he said the election of the flag bearer should reflect the national character, because whatever the delegates would do should help build a better future and a better generation for Ghanaians.

Nana Akufo-Addo, who was very instrumental in empowering the delegates, urged party members to rally behind whoever the majority of the delegates would choose at the congress.

“Whether you vote for the winner or not, since the majority of the delegates have spoken, we should all close our ranks and rally behind the winner. Anyone who work against the winner is a not a genuine NPP member,” he said. To him, if given the mandate to lead the NPP to the 2012 polls, he would help to recapture the seven parliamentary seats lost by the NPP in the last general elections to the NDC. “You are the representatives of the people. Listen to the voice of Ghanaians and vote in that direction for the victory of the party,” he said.

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