Vice-President Alhaji Aliu Mahama has stated that the New Patriotic Party (NPP) "is not an ethnic-based party as some detractors of the party are trying to portray it".
"The party belongs to all Ghanaians, irrespective of tribal, religious or social status", he said.
The Vice-President said this at a durbar held in his honour at Nalerigu in the East Mamprusi District on Wednesday.
He mentioned prominent northern politicians such as the late Mr S.D. Dombo and Mr Jatoe Kaleo as some of the pioneers of the defunct Northern People's Party (NPP) from which the New Patriotic Party sprung.
He said the late personalities contributed and sacrificed a lot for the NPP tradition adding, "it would be a sign of ignorance or ingratitude for some misguided people to claim that the NPP is ethnic-based".
Vice President Mahama said Ghanaians were discerning people and would not vote for any presidential aspirant who would try to play up the ethnic card.
He said among the 17 aspirants, he was the most trusted, tested and proven gentleman who could lead the NPP to victory in the 2008 general election and therefore appealed to the delegates to elect him to ensure that victory.
He said he was also the only one who could attract the floating votes across the political divide, as well as garner votes from the three northern regions, the "Zongos" and the Volta Region.
The Nayiri, Naa Bohagu Mahami Abdulai Sheriga, Paramount Chief of the Mamprugu Traditional Area, commended the government for the numerous development projects it had carried out in the area since it came to power, singling out the provision of telecommunication facilities as a major achievement.
Naa Sheriga urged the NPP presidential aspirants and the delegates to exhibit good conduct to ensure a successful congress on December 22.
"A successful congress would show that democracy has gained firm roots in the country," he said.