OVER 5000 settler farmers who were largely supporters of the opposition NDC in the Juaboso constituency of the western region have defected to the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP). According to the defectors, their decisions were based on development projects which the Kufuor government promised them and has indeed delivered to them.
Nana Bawa, who spoke on behalf of the defectors at Juaboso, during the tour of the town by the flagbearer of the NPP, Nana Akufo-Addo, said after carefully watching the performance of the government in the last seven years, they have decided to take a concrete decision to support the NPP by rallying behind the candidate to clinch victory come December.
They believe that it would be better to allow Nana Akufo-Addo to continue the good work of President John Agyekum Kufuor's administration, than to hand over power to any other political party.
Nana Bawa told the thousands of party supporters who thronged the durbar grounds at the Juaboso Park, to welcome the leader of the NPP, that they should do a critical analysis of the performance of the NPP and give Nana Addo the mandate to continue from where President Kufuor will leave.
Some of the defectors, who spoke to The Chronicle after their leader had made his pronouncements, confirmed their defection to the NPP and saying that they would never return to the NDC party which failed to offer them good social policies as the current government is doing now.
One of them, Alhassan Amadu, told this reporter that he has seen the light and would not make the mistake of giving his vote to the NDC, which he claimed had deceived them for 8 good years under the Jerry John Rawlings administration.
Maima Abu, a 42-year-old trader also confirmed her decision to join the NPP because of the National Health Insurance Scheme, School feeding programme and the Metro Mass Transit. According to her, all these social interventions have changed her entire life and that of her children.
As a result, she said she would make sure that all her family members, numbering six children and her husband, who has also defected, would turn their attention to what the NPP has done and give their votes to the party in December.
When The Chronicle contacted the national organizer of the Nasara Club, the zongo branch of the NPP, Alhaji Musah Muctar Bamba, he confirmed the story and emphasized that apart from the over 5000 who defected, there were a lot more people from the zongo communities in the other political parties who were running to join the NPP for the obvious reason that their social lives had been transformed.
“The lives of the zongo inhabitants, particularly those settler farmers in the south who are currently enjoying the services of the Metro Mass Transport system, the National Health Insurance Scheme, the School Feeding programme as well as other social interventions of the current administration has been transformed” he pointed out.
Due to this over whelming support that the NPP continue to receive from the zongos which were previously their 'no go' areas, Alhaji Bamba expressed optimism that the NPP could be winning not less than 50-60% of the zongo votes in the December polls.
The flagbearer of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP), Nana Addo Danquah Akufo-Addo, has meanwhile advised Ghanaians to kick against any political party that would use divide and rule tactics to deceive Ghanaians in this year's elections.
The campaign of north against south, Islam against Christianity, Akans against Ewes must be rejected by the good people of Ghana, he said.
Nana Addo gave the advice at Essam-Debiso at a durbar of chiefs and people of the area organized by the party, to introduce him officially to the people.
His visit to the area formed part of his week long tour of the western region, particularly to the party's “orphan” constituencies to galvanize support for the party.
He told the chiefs and people of the area, political parties and Ghanaians in general to put behind them the politics of division, deceit and lies. This he said would ensure peaceful elections in December.
He told the thousands of party supporters who swarmed the durbar grounds to kick against doom mongers who are predicting violence in the coming December polls, like comparing Ghana to Kenya and other troubled spots in Africa.
According to the NPP Flagbearer, nothing untoward would happen in the December polls. This is because, the Kufuor administration had laid a solid foundation and he, Nana Addo, if elected by the good people of Ghana would continue from there.
He introduced the elected parliamentary candidate of the party, Anthony Marshal Apoh to the people of the constituency.
Other campaign members of the party, who were present at the function, also spoke about the need for the NPP to retain power. The former Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, Osafo Maafo, who received a thunderous applause from the crowd, touched on the major achievements of the NPP administration, citing the increment of cocoa prices on four occaisions, which he said was unprecedented in the history of the country.
Boakye Agyarko, Addo Kufuor, Professor Frimpong Boateng, all defeated Presidential aspirants mounted a strong campaign for the retention of the NPP.
On his part, the national chairman of the Party, Peter Mac Manu called on the people to judge the NPP by considering the level of development in the country and to give the party another chance to continue with their developmental programmes for the country.