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30.11.2007 Politics

Effah-Dartey in trouble with vetting committee

By Daily Guide

As the last person to be screened by the Vetting Committee of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) on Wednesday Captain (rtd) Nkrabea Effah-Dartey, one of the presidential aspirants of the ruling party appears to be in a quandary because of a seeming grey area in his records.

Information reaching Daily Guide indicates that Captain Effah-Dartey's application has been pushed aside following some detected discrepancies.

He left the party's old head office at Kokomlemle where the vetting took place, perhaps with an assignment to provide the party chiefs who interviewed him with proof that he has no criminal record in his cupboard.

When he took his turn before the vetting committee members, the Sandhurst trained one-time infantry officer was asked why he left blank a portion in the personal data form, which asked if he had any previous criminal record.

The Berekum MP and former deputy Interior Minister had avoided the question. But at the verbal question and answer segment of the screening, the party chiefs asked him the question again and he denied that he had any such record.

The Committee then tasked him to submit additional documentary proof of his clean bill of health Friday, ahead of the submission of its report to the party next week.

The Committee is expected to submit its report upon the arrival of its chairman who is currently out of the country.

Captain Effah-Dartey had a brush with the law when he was charged with a coup attempt during the days of the Rawlings regime.
He even spent sometime at the Nsawam Medium Security Prison until freedom came his way.

How the aspirant can turn this blot into a non-criminal action is a task now before him, as he prepares to submit documentary proof that he did not breach the laws of the land.

Captain Effah-Dartey's predicament is not unsurpassed. Other aspirants had to employ convincing skills to explain why they did not have their founding and membership certificates.

A particular aspirant who was equally tasked to submit additional materials was said to have protested strongly, complaining had been hampered with.

Noted for his humorous interventions and responses, the for¬mer deputy Interior Minister, playwright and University of Ghana trained lawyer told his critics that his entry into the NPP race was not a fluke.

After a delayed payment of the mandatory filing fee of ¢250 million, he fired back at his critics saying the delay was strategic.
With a penchant for invoking the name of God, Effah-Dartey expressed gratitude to God for allowing him to see the day of his nomination.
According to him, he deliberately held back the filing in order to achieve maximum impact.

With a rich military background, his bodyguards, when he stormed the NPP headquarters, were made up of 10 smartly dressed young men resembling secret service operatives.

He has dismissed speculations that he is going to back out of the race explaining, "God-willing, I intend to fight to the finish and I'm sure I will win."