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25.10.2008 Politics

Defeated contestants should not stand as independent candidates -Labik

By gna

Mr Joseph Yaani Labik, Member of Parliament (MP) for Bunkpurugu Yunyoo, has said candidates who were defeated at the primaries of the various parties had no moral justification to contest as independent candidates in the forthcoming December polls.

He said that the failure win party primaries signalled that a candidate did not have massive support of his or her party.

Mr. Labik, an independent Member of Parliament (MP) in the Ghanaian Legislature, was speaking in an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA) in Accra on Saturday.

The independent MP, who was in Parliament on the ticket of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) from 1993 to 2000, said he defected from the NDC to become an independent candidate in the 2000 because he was not allowed to go through the party's primaries.

Mr. Labik said “I felt someone who was unpopular with the people was being planted on me and the people, so I went solo and won the election in that year and won again four years later.”

He said he would contest this year's election as an independent candidate and was confident that the people would retain him as their MP to enable him to champion their cause.

Mr Labik said he had supported the majority party and ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) in Parliament since he became independent MP.

The MP, a social worker by profession, said the decision to belong to the majority side or the minority was the greatest challenge for an independent MP.

Mr Labik, however, said an independent MP was a national asset because he or she often thought of Ghana and the constituency first.

He said his greatest achievement since he went to Parliament in 1993, had been his ability to open up the constituency to the rest of Ghana and the world.

Mr Labik said he brought development to the people, including the establishment of senior high school, improvement in social infrastructure and expressed confidence that he would be re-elected to represent his constituents in Parliament in the next elections.