You are here: HomeNews2006 05 22Article 104669

Politics of Monday, 22 May 2006

Source: Chronicle

Party?s Future Is Bleak - NPP Youth

A youth group believed to comprise card-bearing members of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) in the Ashanti Region has called on President John Agyekum Kufuor to wake up from ?his deep slumber in order to bring back the lost glory and enthusiasm of the party in the region.?

According to the group, which calls itself Ashanti Concerned Youth, the confidence level of Ghanaians in the government was high in the year 2004, thus giving a thumbs-up to President Kufuor and his government, but this has dwindled significantly in the government?s second term in office. ?Within four years in government, the goodwill had whittled away and the party, just before 2004 voting results could come in, was panting for breath,? spokesman for the group, Mr. David Osei, noted.

He said they had observed that anxiety had set in because the fate of the youth on whose back the NPP rode to power was in a limbo. He affirmed, ?no one can dispute this as a fact.? ?What do we see?? he asked rhetorically and continued that the government had no proper youth policy in place, thereby leading to a seemingly rising youth unemployment situation in the country.

Mr. Osei, former President of TESCON branch at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), told newsmen in an interview after a press conference in Kumasi that the NPP government appeared to have abandoned the youth, hence the disillusionment and despondency gradually and steadily seeping into the party?s Ashanti stronghold.

He cited the Asawase by-election as a case in point; ?Even as the NDC votes did not increase, that of the NPP were completely eroded and since there is no evidence that they went to the NDC, what lesson do we (NPP) draw from this?? According the former students? leader, the initial euphoria after the Asawase by-election was that the party had learnt its lessons and would work towards it, but unfolding events and developments suggested otherwise. ?Gradually, the demise of the elephant fraternity is becoming imminent and like the Biblical prophet said, he saw the Israelites like sheep with no shepherd,? Mr. Osei lamented, adding, ?We seem to be sinking and therefore demand to know why the ship of our government is sinking??

According to the group, Ashanti region is ill-developed and all projects contracted have come to a standstill, leaving the citizens in a state of helplessness and with lost confidence. The firebrand, Osei, did not leave out the invariable water problems in the Kumasi metropolis, and cited Buokrom, Tafo Pankrono and Asuoyeboa SSNIT flats as areas badly hit.

On unfulfilled electoral promises by the NPP government, the Ashanti Concerned Youth expressed dissatisfaction about the situation. ?We have been promised a fly-over at Oforikrom, Suame, Sofoline, and the only awarded Asafo roundabout-UTC interchange has run into serious problem, compounding the already terrible traffic congestion in the metropolis.?

The youth blamed the out-going Regional Minister, Mr. Sampson Kwaku Boafo, for having failed in his duty to supervise projects in the region. ?We recollect that it took the Vice President and the Minister for Road Transport to urge contractors to speed up the project. The problem is not different in all the districts in Ashanti,? they alleged. They expressed their fear that the government had just about 500 days to pack bag and baggage and this could affect the party?s chances in succeeding itself after President Kufuor?s tenure. ?If there is going to be a haemorrhage of votes due to disillusionment, then we can say that the future is bleak for our party and there is no light at the end of the tunnel,? the spokesman noted.

According to him, government must be seen running and not crawling ? as the NPP government is now doing ? to turn things around for the betterment of the entire citizenry and not just a few people.

He therefore called on President Kufuor to wake up from his apparent deep slumber in order to rekindle the spirit of the demoralized NPP youths in the region and elsewhere who fought for the party while it was in opposition.