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General News of Wednesday, 27 February 2008

Source: GNA

NDC committed to growing Ghana's democracy - Prof. Mills

Accra, Feb 27, GNA - Professor John Evans Atta Mills, National Democratic Congress (NDC) Leader and Presidential Candidate, on Wednesday reiterated his party's commitment to ensuring that the frontiers of Ghana's democratic process are broadened as much as possible.

He said the NDC, being a party that helped give birth to Ghana's fourth republican constitution, there would always be an unalloyed commitment on his part to lead the party along the lines of acceptable democratic norms.

Prof. Mills made the remarks during a courtesy call British High Commissioner, Mr. Nicholas Wescott, paid to him at his Kuku Hill Office in Osu.

He told the British High Commissioner that; "as much as the NDC is committed to Ghana's democracy, there are some ominous signs that some other players in the electoral field may be having their own ideas as to how they intend to grow the country's democracy.

"The NDC is committed to growing Ghana's democracy and all we ask for is a free and fair election."

Professor Mills recounted what happened during the 2004 elections and how because he did not want to fulfil any inordinate desire and therefore walk in innocent blood to the presidency, he allowed the NPP to win the elections via Jake Obetsebi Lamptey's press conference that declared the NPP winners.

With the NDC Leader were, Professor Kofi Nyidevu Awoonor, diplomat and academician, Johnson Asiedu Nketia, NDC General Secretary, Kofi Attoh, NDC International Relations Director, Alex Segbefia, Campaign Coordinator, and Antwi Boasiako Sekyere, Chief Of Staff, Office of Professor Mills.

The role of the Electoral Commission (EC) came up for discussion and it was brought to the attention of the High Commissioner how the EC has virtually killed the Inter Party Advisory Committee (IPAC), when it recently put out its timetable for this election year without IPAC's input as was the case in the past, and this is a source of concern to the NDC.

Unlike in the past when the voters register was opened early in the election year so that dummy registers could come out early for the parties to have enough time to go through it and correct all anomalies, this year, the EC was planning to open the register towards the middle of the year.

Professor Mills assured Mr. Wescott that the NDC would adhere strictly to its social democracy philosophy and judge its successes by its ability to improve the well-being of the vulnerable and less advantaged in society.

"I pledge to be judged by the benefits that accrue to the masses and not by the number of hotels that my son owns," the NDC leader said.

Mr. Wescott said that he was very happy to hear that Professor Mills and the NDC were committed to giving space to Ghana's democracy to grow and promised to play his part in a very neutral way to keep Ghana's democracy afloat.

"We will keep a close eye on the elections, stay active in the process, but stay neutral" the High Commissioner said. Mr. Wescott said he was also very appreciative of Professor Mills' commitment to do nothing to shake the solid foundation that the two countries have built over the years.

The British High Commissioner was accompanied by Rosie Tapper, who takes over from Mr. Gary Nikols as the Second Secretary, Political, Press and Public Affairs. 27 Feb. o8

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