CHAIRMAN OF the National Campaign Committee of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Jake Obetsebi-Lamptey has accused the National Democratic Congress (NDC) of masterminding last Wednesday's disturbances at Agbogbloshie in Accra after an NPP rally.
“The disturbances that we saw at Agbogbloshie are part of a grand scheme hatched at the beginning of the year by the NDC leadership to disrupt this election.”
At a press conference held at the NPP Headquarters in Accra yesterday to register the party's displeasure about recent happenings on the political landscape, Jake said the attack falls within the NDC's game plan.
Some youth suspected to be NDC hoodlums, armed with machetes, sticks, broken bottles and stones, on Wednesday evening attacked the convoy of Nana Akufo-Addo, flagbearer of the NPP, after he had addressed a rally at the Agbogbloshie Market in Accra.
Moreover, he highlighted the largest opposition NDC's repeated invocations that “we are heading for a repeat of the experiences of Kenya and Zimbabwe”.
According to Jake, “they have fomented violence whenever given the opportunity,” citing the event at the Chief Imam's residence; Tamale; Gushiegu and the most recent clash at Agbogbloshie, even though the country is girding its loins for peaceful general elections.
On the diplomatic front, he maintained that the NDC had recklessly disseminated false news that “this elections is too close to call and that if the NPP wins, there will be violence”.
He said what had confirmed such intentions was the supposed analysis executed by Sebastian Spio-Garbrah, son of defeated NDC presidential aspirant Ekwow Spio-Garbrah, which suggested that “when results are declared showing that the NPP has won, there will be violence starting from parts of Accra”.
For Mr. Obetsebi-Lamptey, “we have run a campaign based on our record in government; the strength of our vision for this country and the exceptional qualities of our leader and presidential candidate, knowing that elections are about the future and not the past.
“We expect that on December 7, Ghanaians will vote for the party that will move Ghana forward to a brighter future,” he added.
Mr. Obetsebi-Lamptey indicated that “the NDC has resorted to insults, not only of their opponents, mainly the NPP, but of the public. Recently, former President Mr. Jerry John Rawlings alleged that President Kufuor had bribed the people of the Central Region for their votes in the 2004 elections, without a shred of evidence”.
Touching on trust and leadership, he questioned: “Which party can Ghanaians trust to have the leadership, the competence and the energy to move Ghana forward?”
He further argued that “while the opposition NDC has been working to discredit our electoral process and to run our country down, the NPP leadership has done its best to lower tensions and to work for a peaceful election.
“After Tamale and Gushiegu, while they were threatening more confrontation, we were talking about conciliation,” the campaign strategist added.
He hinted that the party had called on the NDC's hierarchy to “work with us to lower tensions and promote peace in the country”.
For a very peaceful co-existence among party adherents and Ghanaians at large, the party suggested that the security agencies should act more forcefully to prevent the outbreak of violence at political events, pointing out that anybody caught in such ill-motives must face the full rigours of the law without fear or favour.
The NPP has also urged the rank and file of the NDC to re-examine their motives and change their ways in order to support peace and stability during the elections.
To the media, Mr. Obetsebi-Lamptey appealed to them to practice journalism which is based on courage and candour and that “they should work with us to create an atmosphere of peace, calm, law and order,” adding that it must be done without fear or favour to any side.
He noted also that “we shall continue to urge restraint on the part of our supporters and co-operate fully with the security forces to ensure peace”.
By Nathaniel Y.Yankson