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General News of Sunday, 17 December 2017


NPP Conference: Hygiene prioritised amid Swine flu fears

The issue of hygiene and sanitation seems to have taken centre stage at the Heroes Park in Kumasi where the New Patriotic Party (NPP), is today [Sunday] holding its extraordinary national delegates conference to consider various proposed amendments to the party’s Constitution.

This comes at a time when fear has gripped some residents in the Ashanti Regional capital over the outbreak of H1N1 influenza type A at the Kumasi Academy which has claimed about four lives in the last month.

Organizers of the Congress, as part of efforts to ensure the health of the over 5,000 expected delegates, have mounted several mobile hand sanitizer stands to avert any bacterial and viral infections during the event.

Ahead of the commencement of the official program, the entire venue was also subjected to a disinfection exercise.

A medical team has also be stationed at a vantage point to address any prevailing medical situation during the event.

Some ushers have also been dispatched to apply sanitizers to persons entering the main conference grounds to prevent infections.

An ambulance is also on standby to respond to emergency cases.

Meanwhile, delegates and party enthusiasts have begun trooping to the event grounds to participate in the conference.

The event has also provided an opportunity for dozens of traders who have lined up the streets leading to the Park selling party paraphernalia.

The NPP deferred the amendment of its constitution to the extraordinary national delegates conference when it held its Annual National Delegates Conference in August.

Indications are that some members of the party have called for a review of the party’s electoral college system to ensure that the same number of delegates who vote for the party’s national executives, also vote for the selection of their presidential candidate.

Some NPP members have also reportedly called for a review of requirements for qualification to the constituency and regional executive position.

They want only persons who have gone through the ranks of the party at the local level, to be given the chance to vie for such positions.

Disagreement over amendments

Already, there have been a number of concerns raised over some of the proposed amendments to the Constitution.

For instance, the NPP-USA branch, this week, issued a strongly-worded statement accusing some persons in the party of hijacking the process.

No room for division

The Acting National Chairman of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Freddie Blay, has called on delegates to ensure that they resolve any lingering issues they might have before they leave the Conference. Mr Blay said the NPP can take a step closer to retaining power in the 2020 general elections if the Conference is conducted in a peaceful manner.

“This is a family gathering; a meeting to see how best to ensure that our party is strong and formidable for future elections,” Mr Blay said.