Ghanaians Must Defend Constitution -NPP
The ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) has urged all Ghanaians to defend resolutely the present constitutional order. The NPP also served notice to the entire nation that the "NPP government is committed to using all legal and lawful means to serve its full four-year term to the full, seek re-election, and judging by our performance, win massively in the 2004 for another term."
These positions were articulated by Mr. Dan Botwe, General Secretary, at a press conference held yesterday at the party's headquarters in Accra. The press briefing was held to state the party's official response to the potentially subversive statements made by Flt. Lt. Rawlings, NDC Founder. Present at the function were the chairman of the NPP Mr. Harona Esseku, some top executives of the party and teeming party faithful.
Quoting Article 3 of the 4th Republican Constitution Mr. Dan Botwe said it is the civic responsibility of all Ghanaians to protect and defend the constitution by all lawful means necessary. The NPP he stressed "would want to warn Mr. Jerry John Rawlings and his supporters that the NPP administration will never allow this impoverished nation of ours to become a stage on which self-proclaimed messiahs will experiment with the life of the people again".
Mr. Botwe cautioned Ghanaians "never to forget the history of the 20 years that Jerry John Rawlings and his NDC ruled this nation. The sort of holy war Rawlings preached to institute integrity, probity and accountability never become a reality. Rawlings never came to emancipate Ghana. He came to dominate, control and exploit the riches of this nation for himself and family."
On the potentially treasonable statement made by Mr. Rawlings the NPP's response was fiery: "The NPP really finds it very difficult to understand why Mr. Rawlings chooses to undermine the democratic process at the least opportunity, and this latest call to arms and his hypocritical romanticizing of what he called positive defiance should be condemned by all Ghanaians before it leaves a disastrous imprint on the minds of adventurous demagogues."
Citing the achievements of the NPP in just eighteen months of power which include the "air of freedom" in the country, "the re-definition and re-prioritising of national values", "the recent vote of 73 billion cedis to rehabilitate the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital and the gradual resuscitation of the national economy, Mr Botwe was emphatic that "the Kufuor administration has done better than the NDC under Jerry John Rawlings".
Mr Botwe said if there was any rot in Ghana as claimed in Rawlings' speech then the former president was the artful architect of it all.
The NPP General Secretary said his party had taken some time to respond to the speech because it favoured a sober approach to matters bordering on the security of the nation.
It must be recalled that Mr. Rawlings gave a speech in Kumasi on the 10th of August in which he berated the government and virtually called for an insurrection. Mr. Rawlings's remarks drew total condemnation from the majority of Ghanaians and triggered an enquiry by the state's security apparatus. Mr. Rawlings was questioned by the Bureau of National Investigations (BNI). The sitting president Mr. Kufuor was engaging world leaders on a tour of Asia when the remarks were made. He has since returned and maintained a resolute and dignified silence on the matter. Investigations by the national security system on the possibly treasonable statements are continuing.