An aspiring flag bearer of the Convention People s Party (CPP), Dr Paa Kwesi Nduom, has emphasised the need for the party to have a united front to pursue its agenda to recapture power.
He has, therefore, cautioned those seeking election to various positions of responsibility at the national congress not to put personal ambition before the well-being of the party.
He said there were so many people who recently joined the party and were seeking high-level national offices and needed to know the chequered political history the party had gone through.
Dr Nduom was addressing some members of the CPP from six constituencies at Tarkwa as part of his tour of the Western Region to seek strength and inspiration to help him win the flagbearership to lead the party.
Dr Nduom said the CPP tradition had a recent history of going into national delegates' congresses divided and coming out torn into fragments.
He said after the People's Convention Party (PCP) congress in 1996, where Alhaji Asoma Banda was elected chairman and the late Vice-President Kow Nkensen Arkaah elected the flag bearer, there was so much disunity that Alhaji Banda gave up his chairmanship and quit active politics.
He said the congress that elected Dr Abubakar Alhassan as chairman and Professor Hagan as flag bearer for the 2000 elections did not fare any better, adding that "those who lost went home to sleep and did not bother to support the flag bearer or parliamentary candidates.
“The CPP sank to its lowest level with only one Member of Parliament.
“The divide and conquer politics was repeated when Dr Edmund Delle was elected chairman with Mr George Oposika Aguddey as flag-bearer for the 2004 elections," he said, and explained that "those who won acted as if they could win the general election with only their supporters".
He said as a result of that some members of the party did not support the flag-bearer and the flag-bearer ignored the parliamentary candidates.
That, he said, resulted in a disappointing total vote of about one-third of what constituted the combined total votes the parliamentary candidates got and that, in effect, Mr Aguddey was rejected in all constituencies and not just in one or two of them.
That experience, he said, should inform the current delegates to elect national executives and flag-bearers who would be acceptable in the 2008 elections.
"It is, important that all contestants for national executive positions and for the high position of the CPP flag-bearer to avoid negative campaigning.
"Indeed, the CPP's leading members need to show by word and deed that they belong to one family. For a party seeking revival, they must be able to prove to Ghanaians that the CPP is capable of uniting the country," he added.
Dr Nduom said since 2001, many CPP members had been given the opportunity to prove themselves by being appointed by the Kufuor Administration to responsible positions in the country.
"We should use this to show that the party has people who can be relied on to administer the affairs of the country successfully.
Dr Nduom said when given the nod as flag-bearer and voted as president he would focus on solving the numerous problems facing the country.
He said he would focus on the implementation of ideas to free the people from poverty into prosperity.
"We need a leader who will focus on solving our problems and implementing ideas to free our people from poverty and to become prosperous," he said.
"I believe I am that leader and I want the CPP to give me the opportunity and privilege to serve as the next president of the Republic of Ghana," he added.
He said he had had the opportunity to associate himself in various ways with leading members of the Nkrumaist family who had helped him to understand the CPP tradition and its commitment to the poor, the workers, the privileged, as well as the Pan Africa Agenda.
“I know this party and the party knows me. Our members know what I have done over the years to keep the flame of the CPP alive," he said.
Mr Nduom explained that before that fateful day of February 24, 1966 mass transportation worked, schools were built all over Ghana that gave many of our leaders the education they were now using to lead successful lives.
"Ghana Airways worked, Black Star Line worked, Ghanaians made Africans all over the world very proud", he added.