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Politics of Saturday, 17 May 2008

Source: GNA

Ward-Brew elected DPP flag bearer for Election 2008

Accra, May 17, GNA - Mr Thomas N. Ward-Brew, Founder, Chairman and Leader of Democratic People's Party (DPP) was on Saturday elected flag bearer to contest for December 7 Presidential election.

At the close of balloting supervised by officials of the Electoral Commission (EC), Mr Ward-Brew had 266 valid votes representing 89.86 per cent as against 30 votes representing 10.14 per cent by Mr Alfred Opoku Essien his main challenger.

The total votes cast were 300 with four rejected ballots. A third contender Mrs Lovia Amponsah also known as Dormaa Yaa Asantewaa stepped down before the balloting and asked her supporters to vote for Mr Ward-Brew. The EC also officially announc ed an 11-member National Executive Officers elected unopposed at the close of nomination for the National Delegates Congress.

They were, Mr G. M. Tettey First Vice Chairman, Mr Ekow Bentil, Second Vice Chairman, Alhaji Muhammad Salisu Sulaimana, General Secretary, Nii Otoo Otoo, Deputy General Secretary and Mr Francis Smith, Financial Secretary.

Others were, Mr Kojo Rockson, National Organiser, Mr Kenneth Dadzie, Deputy National Organiser, Ms Eunice Banson, National Women's Organiser, Mr Mathias Boateng, Youth Organiser, Mr Frank Tandoh, Treasurer and Mr Ali Umar Kuriba, Education Secretary.

The Congress was however, without the usual fanfare, display of party insignia to adorn the congress hall and grounds, singing and dancing to brass band music and posters of the contestants. Ghana News Agency observed that more than 95 per cent of the delegates including the flag bearer aspirants, the executives and other regional executives were not in party T-shirts.

Contrary to the usual practice where delegates at political party congresses glued to their seats throughout the electoral process to ensure that their interests were secured, delegates at the DPP congress showed lackadaisical attitude towards the process. The handful of security personnel at the congress grounds were virtually on holiday.

It was also observed that even during voting and just before the results were declared, some delegates boarded their buses and left the congress grounds, possibly because they came from far and had to return home in the night.

Quite unusual, all the political parties invited to grace the occasion including the ruling New Patriotic Party, National Democratic Congress, Convention Peoples Party, and other minority parties failed to turn-up except representatives of Peoples' National Convention. Some observers at the congress told GNA that the attitude of delegates towards voting and vote counting was evidence of the lack of passion in the party to pursue the cause of consolidating democracy, which they professed.

"They should have demonstrated to observers that they were committed to jealously guarding their own internal democracy so that people in the country could have faith in their professed commitment to providing the kind of leadership they promised," an observer said. Meanwhile, just when vote counting was over, few delegates went to rejoice with the winner and newly elected flag bearer of DPP, Mr Ward-Brew and carried him shoulder high amidst singing and dancing. The DPP becomes the sixth political party to elect its flag bearer for Election 2008 after the National Democratic Congress (NDC), the People's National Convention (PNC), the Convention People's Party (CPP), the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the Democratic Freedom Party (DFP).

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