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General News of Wednesday, 2 April 2003

Source: Chronicle

NDC's Intended Demo Not Necessary - Dan Lartey

THE LEADER of the Great Consolidated Popular Party (GCPP), Mr. Dan Lartey, has said that the demonstration that the National Democratic Congress (NDC) is to embark on is not necessary, adding that the current economic crisis Ghanaians are facing was created by them during their two decades of governance.

In an interview with Chronicle, at his party headquarters in Accra, he said the NDC has not met the other opposition parties over the intended demonstration, and that if the GCPP is invited to join, he will snub the NDC. To embark on such a demonstration will be a great disservice to the nation, as it will not help solve any of the country's problems.

Mr. Lartey accused leaders of the NDC of being the cause of the unemployment and the hardships Ghanaians are now facing.

He said if a demonstration is started, it might result in violence, which this country cannot contain.

According to him, it was the ineptitude of the NDC that prompted Ghanaians to change the government in the 2000 elections. The manifesto of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), he noted, pleased the people to vote for President Kufuor.

He said it is unfortunate that the NPP administration has not lived up to their expectations, as they have not fulfilled their promises. As a result of this, he said, Ghanaians are working hard to meet the challenges faced by the country, in spite of the unemployment situation.

He hinted that the NPP would stand trial in the court of the Ghanaian in the next elections.

When asked to comment on the call made by Mills to prosecute district chief executives (DCEs), he said, "If he found that they need to be prosecuted and did not, then why he is telling somebody to do what he did not do?"

On the electoral process, he condemned the practice whereby people are given money or material things before they vote for a particular party, saying that it is not a good way of influencing the electorate to vote in one's favour. He said during elections, people must be organized to make choices on principle and educated on the importance of voting, but not given money before they vote.

"People must be assured of developmental projects, and not given assurances that will not be fulfilled," he underscored.

According to him, the NPP won the Navrongo elections because they had facilities to get elected.

He stated that the vice president, Alhaji Aliu Mahama, and his entourage's tour of the Upper region where he had an opportunity to address a rally and announced the candidate for the Navrongo by-elections, is absurd since he used government facilities to do that. Noting that, that influenced the results of the elections.

Asked why his party refused to file a candidate for the Navrongo elections, he hinted the party was in the process of coming together with the CPP to file a candidate but arrangements were not completed in time for a candidate to be filed.

Mr. Dan Lartey used the occasion to inform Ghanaians that the GCPP is coming strongly as a presidential candidate with domestication at the background, come the next elections.