Grass-Roots Mobilisation, Bane Of PNC's Growth
The People’s National Convention (PNC) has identified grass-roots mobilisation as a critical inadequacy of the party and thus recommended that it be taken seriously.
The party, after a self-debriefing exercise on its performance in the last elections, came to a conclusion that the party’s weak grass-roots mobilisation before and during the 2008 Election caused it a great deal of fortune.
This was the outcome of a workshop organised by the party in Ho in the Volta Region to enhance the capacity of the party executives and the operatives to build stronger structures at constituency levels.
The National Chairman of the party, Alhaji Ahmed Ramadan, who briefed the Daily Graphic, lamented the present state of the party’s structures at the constituencies, and urged delegates to see the workshop as a trailblazer to optimal reorganisation of the party.
He further intimated that some charlatans were spreading false rumours that the PNC had entered into some synthetic unity with parties weaker than it.
He, therefore, advised delegates to ignore those rumours and concentrate on organising the party, so that by the next election, it would be better positioned to give Ghanaians that alternative they had yearned for, for a long time.
He also took the opportunity to admonish members of the party to ignore the animosity that was generated amongst members of the party during the second round of the 2008 Election and forge ahead in unity for a better and stronger PNC.
Aside this in-house observation, a team of consultants from The Netherlands who were also tasked to work with the party in order to identify its major challenges and help suggest solutions to address them also found grass-roots mobilisation as something lacking.
In the light of these, the party decided to organise a workshop with the support of NIMD/IEA to enhance the capacity of party executives and operatives to strengthen party structures and mobilisation at the constituency levels in the Volta Region.
The theme for the workshop was “Enhancing the capacity of party executives and operatives to build strong party structures at the grass-roots level.”
Delegates were drawn from all the 22 constituencies in the region. They comprised constituency executives and parliamentary candidates in the last elections.
In addition to the delegates, there were also some national officers present to spice the occasion, as well as learn from the delegates.
It was highly interactive as the resource persons engaged the participants during their presentations in order to make for easier understanding of the issues being discussed.
The participants, on the other hand, also felt free to ask questions and made comments on the topics that were discussed.
Some of the expectations of the workshop were “delegates must be able to explain to members what is meant by the term grassroots mobilisation,” the PNC chairman said.
Delegates must also understand the relevance of mobilising and strengthening party structures at the grassroots as well as acquire some basic tools of mobilisation at the lower levels by the end of the programme.
Delegates were also expected to learn ways of strengthening party structures at all levels in the constituencies. Finally, they were also expected to contribute opinions to feed in to the work plan that will be devised for all constituencies, as a comprehensive guide towards grassroots mobilisation at the end of all the workshops.
The acting Volta Regional Chairman of the party, Mr Emmanuel Azinogo, thanked the leadership for such initiative, and expressed optimism that he and his constituency delegates would benefit from the workshop and apply whatever they had learnt to grow and promote the PNC at the lower levels.
The acting Policy Analyst of the party, Mr Atik Mohammed, said it was the first of a series of workshops designed to enhance the party’s organisation, particularly at the grass-roots levels with the support of NIMD/IEA.
He further took the opportunity to state how the IEA helped in the organisation of similar programmes within the year, and urged participants to take it seriously and participate in all proceedings.
He maintained that it was a fundamental requirement of all mass organisations seeking growth to marshall support at the lower levels of the electoral systems in order to maximise a party’s fortunes in any electoral contest.
He said as a party that did not have the adequate wherewithal to compete with other parties that ran very opulent campaigns, it was imperative to start organising at the grass roots from now till the next election.
Mr Henry Asante spoke on how to ensure grass-roots mobilisation. He also confirmed the indispensability of grass-roots mobilisation in our scheme of things if we must achieve our objective of giving Ghanaians an alternative as a political party.
He observed that the party could achieve grass-roots mobilisation by constantly preaching the right message at the constituency and other lower levels.
Mr Emmanuel Wilson spoke on the topic, “Ways of reviving and strengthening party structures at all levels in the constituencies for victory in 2012.”