8/19/2008 1:43:23 PM -
The People's National Convention (PNC) has denied reports that it will thrown its weight behind the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) in the event of a run-off during the December elections.
The party indicated that no such decision had been taken, saying it was therefore shocked by the solidarity message allegedly given by its Deputy National Organiser, Abu-Saddique Kwashie Ebla at the just-ended annual delegates' conference of the NPP in Sekondi/Takoradi.
At the NPP rally at the Sekondi College, Mr. Ebla supposedly pledged the PNC's total support for the NPP in the event of an electoral run-off during the December polls, expressing the hope that the NPP would remain in political power, and adding that the PNC had always believed in the ability of the NPP to move Ghana forward.
'As the Senior Prefect of opposition, at least for now, my advice and prayer for you is that you continue to be where you are, not forgetting the small axe that put you there; we assure you that when the going gets tough, the PNC would be there to support you,' he had noted.
Speaking on an Accra-based radio station, Alhaji Ahmed Ramadan, National Chairman of the PNC said he was astonished by Mr Ebla's statement because he was sent to the NPP conference just to extend the party's congratulatory message to the NPP and noted that the decision to support another party was a major one that could not be taken by an individual.
'The greatest decision for the PNC is to win power but if not, I will not run down my own party', said Alhaji Ramadan, stressing, 'I believe the PNC will win.'
He stated that although the PNC had supported the NPP in the 2000 elections where there was a run off, 'that was a collective decision'.
Hoping that the Deputy National Organiser was misquoted, he asserted that since this was the first time of such behaviour, the party was going to sit with Mr. Ebla to look at the speech.
'I have a special relationship with the NPP's running mate and I am embarrassed,' said the PNC Chairman who is a father in-law to Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia.
Dr Bawumia is married to Samira, the only daughter of Alhaji Ramadan.
When asked if he was in a difficult position because of his relationship with the NPP running mate, he answered in the negative and stated that, 'I hit hard when they go wrong not because of mischief but as a national duty'.
In his solidarity message, the Deputy National Organizer allegedly said his party believed the NPP had the ability to steer the affairs of Ghana and move the nation forward and that was why the PNC did not hesitate to throw its weight behind the party during the presidential run-off in the 2000 elections.
He said just as the PNC was prepared to support the NPP, the ruling party should also be ready to reciprocate the gesture.
In an earlier interview with DAILY GUIDE, Alhaji Ramadan had said Nana Addo would not regret choosing Dr. Bawumia as his vice presidential candidate.
The PNC Chairman described the NPP running mate as a brilliant and hard working man who would bring good fortunes to the NPP campaign.
'Yes it is true, his wife Samira is my daughter and I honestly feel elated that her husband had been elevated to this current status. I am honoured and I really wish them well,' Alhaji Ramadan noted.
He congratulated the NPP for the manner in which it handled the tension that rocked the party at the threshold of choosing a running mate, adding that he was glad the party had surmounted the obstacle.
Mr. Ebla, in his address at the NPP Conference, purportedly also referred to Samira as a political treasure from the PNC to the NPP.
His solidarity message drew loud cheers and applause from the large elephant family gathered at the Sekondi College on Saturday.
The PNC's representative and the Democratic Freedom Party (DFP), represented by its General Secretary, Bede Ziedeng and its National First Vice Chairman, Frances Assiam, all joined the NPP family in doing the 'Kangaroo' dance which symbolizes the NPP's 'we are moving forward' mantra.
Giving a solidarity message from the DFP, Mr. Ziedeng said his party believed multi-party democracy was a tool for strengthening democracy and good governance and would therefore be glad if the NPP as a political party grew stronger.
He expressed a lot of goodwill for the NPP but was however of the belief that the DFP would pull a surprise victory during the December polls.
For his part, Ivor Greenstreet, General Secretary of the Convention People's Party (CPP) said the NPP should be getting ready to go on retirement after the December polls.
The National Democratic Congress (NDC) had no representative at the event, even though NPP officials announced that they had sent the party an official invitation.
The Saturday programme was also used to launch the NPP manifesto for the 2008 elections and to adopt a Polling Station Operational Manual for the party.
Meanwhile DAILY GUIDE has learnt that PNC's controversial solidarity message was actually delivered by Henry Asante, Chairman of the PNC Publicity Committee, although it was wrongly attributed to Mr Ebla.
By Emelia Ennin Abbey