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Politics of Thursday, 22 May 2008

Source: GNA

PNC abrogates electoral alliance with CPP

Accra, May 22, GNA - The People's National Convention (PNC) on Thursday formally announced the abrogation of an electoral alliance with the Convention People's Party (CPP) for breach of trust.

Dr Edward N. Mahama, flag bearer of the PNC, said the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the party after deliberations on Wednesday resoundingly resolved that the party backed out of the alliance. The CPP last week announced that the two Nkrumaists parties had agreed to fight the 2008 election on a common platform.

It said the CPP presidential candidate, Dr Paa Kwesi Nduom, would head the ticket with Dr Mahama as the running mate. They would also field common candidates for the parliamentary election based on their strength on the ground.

But many members of the PNC voiced opposition to the agreement saying it should have been submitted to the NEC for ratification before being made public.

Dr Mahama explained that leading members of the CPP failed to adhere to basic ground rules, which required that the announcement of the alliance be made by the Chairmen of both parties through a joint press statement they would both sign.

"I was completely shocked when early in the morning the next day, before I could properly wake up, I heard on the airwaves that PNC had subordinated itself to CPP," an emotional Dr Mahama stated. He said: "This attitude is a clear betrayal of confidence and disrespect for the terms of the pact. And this greatly undermined our ability to convince people to buy into the idea and terms of alliance." Dr Mahama said this was the "orchestration of some over zealous members" of both parties.

He debunked a suggestion from reporters that he was "a political opportunist", saying, "Dr Mahama is a principled man, but the outcome of the May 14 unilateral announcement by CPP officials was a blatant breach of trust and confidence. I cannot trust Dr Paa Kwesi Nduom." The PNC leader claimed the Electoral Commission (EC) cheated him during the 2000 and 2004 elections through acts of omission during the computation of votes.

"The EC Chairman, Dr Kwadwo Afari-Gyan has openly admitted that the PNC presidential candidate was not credited with the actual votes cast in his favour due to operational hiccup.

"Obviously I should have rejected the outcome of the result, an opportunity I believe the other parties would have hailed and used for their personal advantage," Dr Mahama said. Unity talks between the two Nkrumaists parties have collapsed in the past as both parties refused to shed their identity - slogan, logo and leadership positions.

Last week's announcement was hailed as a "breakthrough" as it was seen as a step to strengthen the Nkrumaist front.