CPP Congress On SaturdayBy Kobby Asmah - Daily Graphic
5/11/2012 7:34:05 AM -
The person to lead the Convention People’s Party in the 2012 elections will be decided Saturday when the party goes to congress at the Essipong Sports Stadium in Sekondi in the Western Region.
The key focus of the congress is the election of the party’s flag bearer, a position being contested by the 2008 vice presidential candidate of the party, Dr Abu Sakara Foster, an economist, and an Accra-based Lawyer and former presidential aspirant, Mr Emmanuel Bright Akwetey.
Over 2,600 delegates are expected at the Essipong Stadium congress to decide the fate of the two contestants. Both have stepped up their campaign across the country to galvanise the needed support to win the presidential slot.
This time round, the one-day congress, on the theme:“Ghana must work again . . . Yabre!!!” will be without the popular face of Dr Papa Kwesi Nduom who has resigned and formed his own party.
Indeed, the process leading to the election of the party’s flag bearer for the 2012 polls had been a thorny issue, culminating in the resignation of Dr Nduom, the party’s 2008 presidential candidate, to form a new political party, the Progressive People’s Party. This occurred just after the party’s congress elected the Samia Nkrumah-led administration last year.
Already, the CPP congress has been postponed a couple of times with party officials attributing this to reorganisation at the grass root level of the party and national programmes including the just completed Biometric Voters Registration exercise.
This is the third time the party had settled on a date for its national congress. The first was March 31 and April 29, 2012 but had to be postponed because the Electoral Commission (EC) was preparing a new voters register.
Reports indicate that Essipong Sports Stadium and its environs are brewing with party activities. The Poster Campaign was launched Thursday in the city and CPP flags are being hoisted in many parts of the city.
On the morning of the congress, starting at 6 a.m., all accreditations would be done to allow for a National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting to commence by 10 a.m. with the congress proper starting at noon.
Members of NEC are expected to pass key resolutions and agree on crucial strategies to prosecute election 2012 as well as to increase the party’s representation in Parliament.
At the end of the congress, local musicians will perform at the stadium to entertain the delegates and to create a festive atmosphere which is expected to linger on the minds of the people for a long time to come.
Mr Akwetey has pledged to offer a more pragmatic leadership when elected as the flag bearer.
On his part, Mr Sakara says he is counting on his track records and party expereince to win the presidential slot.
According to the General Secretary, Mr Kobina Ivor Greenstreet and the Director of Communications, Nii Armah Akomfra, the party is determined to come out of the congress at peace with each other, better organised and ready to prosecute a campaign of fresh ideas.
Mr Greenstreet disclosed that the party was organising the congress in the Western Region because the region had been exceedingly good and faithful to the CPP.
He gave the assurance that all logistical arrangements, including venue, accommodation, transportation and security, were in place.
He said the Electoral Commission would be in charge of the presidential election as mandated by law, saying, “everything is ready for a good congress”.
Nii Akomfrah said at previous congresses, the tension and acrimony were just too overbearing but he was happy to note that this time round “Abu Sakara and Bright Akwetey are conducting themselves in a very positive way; there is a different air blowing in the CPP ranks”.
Earlier, the party chair, Samia Nkrumah, told a section of the media that the party was now cohesive and united and determined to reverse its dwindling fortunes in the country’s elections.
She insisted that the two aspirants were both “capable men, they are competent men, they have served the party well and I am sure they will serve Ghana well”.
She said the CPP was also working hard to increase its representation in Parliament.