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General News of Monday, 18 May 2015

Source: Daily Guide

We need teamwork - Akufo-Addo tells NPP executives

Presidential Candidate of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has called on executives of the party to “trust each other and work with each other.”

In an exclusive interview with DAILY GUIDE yesterday before he embarked on a 16-day tour of Europe, Nana Akufo-Addo expressed regret and concern over the “avoidable tensions” and “negative press” that the party had been receiving recently and called for calm.

He condemned the incident, which took place in Bolgatanga Thursday when the National Chairman and General Secretary visited the Upper East Region.

“All of us are very concerned about these negative incidents. There is no excuse for what happened in the Upper East. The regional leadership has apologised and I am encouraged by the efforts to bring greater understanding going forward from here.”

Nana Akufo-Addo said: “It is important that we work together in a sincere and lasting atmosphere of trust,” adding that “we must all accept that we are all working together in good faith.”

He appealed to the party people to shift away from the air of mistrust that appeared to have engulfed sections of the party, especially among the leadership at the national and regional levels.

“The grassroots are united behind us and we must do more at the top to show to them and the country that we are solid in our conviction to win power together next year.”

He said, “We should all be careful about fielding perceptions of mistrust. It cannot be helpful when we begin to tag some elected officers as having a separate agenda to the ultimate task of winning the 2016 elections. If we continue to mistrust the intentions of those elected to lead us, we end up directing our energies towards ourselves rather than towards addressing the concerns of the Ghanaian people and the necessary task of organising ourselves to contest with our full strength in 2016.” He called on his party not to play into the hands of the NDC.

“It is only our political opponents who will benefit from us mistrusting each other. Ghanaians are looking up to us and we must show to them that we are indeed ready to offer them the hope and effective leadership that they deserve,” he stressed.

Nana Akufo-Addo re-emphasised his message to the party to “concentrate all our energies against the bad governance that the people are enduring and help to reinforce the confidence of the Ghanaian people, that in us, they are sure of a better and competent alternative. We cannot afford to be seen to be opposing ourselves rather than opposing the difficulties the people are struggling with.”

He however expressed the confidence that the challenges in the party would soon be surmounted.

The NPP presidential candidate hinted that the leadership was working towards the objective of “greater understanding and mutual trust and respect.” Nana Akufo-Addo stressed, “This is the time for us to close ranks and not allow anything to divide us.”

He also called on the rank and file to “help elected officers to do their work in an atmosphere of mutual respect.”

The NPP would hold its parliamentary primaries on June 13; and this has brought its own tension, in addition to the known tension at the top. But Nana Akufo-Addo was confident the party would soon turn the corner and focus all attention on the campaign to wrest power from the NDC.

He told party people that “even as we compete among ourselves we must be guided always by the spirit of unity. These primaries are the last major event of internal party contest. We should be proud of what we have achieved so far and be confident of the greater things we can achieve by trusting each other and working with each other. After these primaries, all our efforts should be on the campaign to bring about the needed change in 2016.”