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Opinions of Friday, 5 August 2011

Columnist: Frimpong, Kofi

Let's Ask Samia. Where Is The Money?

Christina Samia Yaba Nkrumah prior to 2007 was a freelance journalist living with her Italian husband and son somewhere in Rome. Then the CPP went for her hoping that Nkrumah's daughter's presence in the party would lift up it's fortunes. This in the same way her two brothers had been entertained but without success. She was paraded up and down Ghana, India, Libya, Zimbabwe, Namibia, etc. The former President Kufuor was persuaded to give her royal treatment - he called her, "Princess". Malik Kweku Baako, Nana Yaw Edusei and many others opened up their private treasuries for her. A Nigerian Senator became a major financier. And she became a Member of Parliament for the Jomoro.
All these contacts and contributions landed Samia with a chauffeur-driven 4x4 vehicle, an apartment in Takoradi, personal assistants, a lavish lifestyle and worry-free campaign. The CPP thought Samia would help other parliamentary candidates with funds for their 2008 campaigns and support the party's overall campaign. But she kept the money, stayed put in Jomoro and worried only about her precious self. If other candidates had received even 10% of what she got in the Western Region, the CPP would have won at least 4 more seats there. But all the money went to Samia.
As the sole CPP MP, Goverments such as that of India have showered her with benefits due to the past relationship between Ghana and India under our first president Nkrumah. She has paraded herself all over the world ostensibly to raise funds to revitalize "her father's party", the CPP. Wallets have been opened up to her with one group allegedly giving her $500,000. She became the Organizer for Libyan Muammar Ghadaffi's King of Kings campaign in Ghana. This in part for funds to finance the activities of the CPP.
The question is, where is the money that Samia has collected in the name of the CPP, meant to help re-build the party?
It is now very obvious that the money Samia has collected in the name of the CPP is what she is using to fuel her campaign to become Chairman of the party. First she decided to starve the party of funds hoping no one else will help fund organization work so they would crawl to her. She coyly offered to fund congress if it was held earlier than normal with her assured as an unopposed candidate. She formed Nkrumah Rising with brand new vehicles and promise of bank accounts for willing constituencies. She was emphatic at a Central Committee when the matter of funding the reorganization of the CPP. She looked straight at the National Chairman and told him that she would not give one pesewa to the CPP's organisation efforts as she was afraid it would work against her! She would help AFTER she was voted in as Chairman. As she goes around the country, it is the same message. Make me Chairman and I will deliver significant funds from friendly governments and individuals.
At all the Regional conferences being held to elect new executives, Samia can be seen sharing money openly to court delegates to vote for her favorite candidates. It is GHC5 per delegate and a bigger bulk sum for her coordinators. She waits until executives are elected at the constituency and regional level then moves in with cash to influence them to join her campaign. During the Northern Regional conference, she caused an announcement to be made for delegates to go for cash thus disrupting proceedings. How did she expect the party to organize itself to find these people in the first place? Now we understand after failing to persuade delegates at the six regional conferences held so far to vote for her preferred candidates, she is sending even more money to individuals in the regions to spread around, the latest being the Brong Ahafo region.
All we want is for Samia to kindly put the money she has collected in the name of the CPP into the party's coffers at the center. The CPP needs it to re-organize the party from the grassroots up. If she wants the tradition her great father founded, then she must eschew self-aggrandizement in favour of the collective. Others sacrificed for there to be a CPP she can shop around to raise money for. Now that others have provided the opportunity, she must also give up the money in favour of party building, teamwork and justice.
Forward ever to a strong, well-organized CPP ready to do battle successfully in 2012!