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Politics of Friday, 27 March 2015

Source: Starrfmonline.com

NPP Primaries: Affirmative action fiat discriminatory – Philip Addison

Lead Counsel for the main opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) in the 2012 election petition case, Philip Addison, has described as "discriminatory" the affirmative action fiat issued by the executive committee of the party.

According to him, although the intention behind the idea is modest, it appears unfair to some prospective parliamentary candidates.

“I think the idea behind it is laudable but I am not too sure if it is constitutional because it looks discriminatory,” the now famous lawyer told TV3 in an interview.

The National Executive Committee of the party says none of its 16 incumbent female MPs should be contested by men in the primaries scheduled for May this year.

The fiat has been met with rage from a section of the party while others including the Women in Law and Development in Africa (WILDAF) have supported it.

The programmes Manager at WILDAF Frank Bogya said the move is the best way to encourage women into politics. “We had earlier submitted a letter to the NPP and proposed to the party to allow their women MPs contest unopposed or be contested by women only.

However, speaking to Kafui Dey on Morning Starr Thursday, the managing editor of the Dispatch Newspaper said the decision will permanently close the chapter on Akufo-Addo’s presidential ambition.

“They must just sit down, take a deep breath, apologise over the decision and move on.

“The more they try to dwindle themselves out, the more they open themselves up. If they want to save their party, if they want to have a chance, if they want to sniff in 2016; they must eat a humble pie and apologise.

“If they insist on this affirmative action, it could cost them (NPP) 2016 and if they intend to push; Akufo-Addo’s last chance for the presidency is gone,” Ephson warned.

Meanwhile, the leadership of the NPP is expected to meet over the decision in the coming days.