24.09.2004 Politics

Victor Gbeho to go independent again

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Keta, Sept. 24, GNA - Mr Victor Gbeho, the independent MP for Anlo, has declared his intension to again stand as independent candidate for the 2004 elections, citing alleged covert and overt designs in the constituency to prevent him from running on the National Democratic Congress (NDC) ticket.

The pro-NDC independent MP said the decision was in respond to the clarion call of his teeming supporters for him to stand solo, in view of the arm-twisting maneuvers against him in the constituency. At a meeting with about 100 of his supporters, majority of them constituency delegates, on Wednesday at Keta, Mr Gbeho declared, "I thank you for the confidence reposed in me and have willingly accepted the call to lead you to victory once again."

The MP and his followers were of the view that, the NDC leadership has failed to address some pertinent concerns on the ground at the recent high powered crises meeting at Sogakope, at which they ordered the Anlo constituency executive to hold primary by September 27, in which all aspirants must be allowed to run.

The former Minister for Foreign Affairs during the NDC Government, explained that the refusal of the constituency leadership to endorse party cards given out by the headquarters to legitimate party members in Anlo area, was a ploy to disqualify the delegates among them they know are his supporters, from voting in the primary.

He said secondly, the singular prerogative granted the constituency chairman, in the absence of branch elections, to visit the branches to select delegates, sidestepping the mutually agreed inclusion of a representative from his camp in the exercise, is planned to select delegates who are hostile to him for the primary.

He and his supporters believe that with these problems on hand, the defeat of Mr Gbeho is a foregone conclusion in any primary, and are therefore, no longer interested in it.

The supporters of Gbeho, with the "Key" as his symbol, have since constituted Strategy and Finance committees to prepare for the campaigns for the elections.

The Anlo constituency of the NDC had been deadlocked in the holding of a primary, which the executive has been accused of blocking in favour of one particular interested candidate.

In a petition to the party headquarters recently, the constituency executive and some delegates allegedly rooted for only Francis Nyonyo Agboada, the Regent of the Anlo Awoamefia Stool, who has since denied ever expressing any interest in the seat, to run for the party in the area.

Clen Sowu, a former MP for the area, Vitor Gbeho and Kofi Humado, a new entrant, have been accused of deserting the party for the past three years, and the national leadership recently issued an ultimatum for access for all aspirants in a primary by September 27. Mr Gbeho, who defeated Sowu, the NDC candidate in the 2000 polls, told his supporters to campaign hard from house to house for victory, but to avoid confrontations and insults to ensure peaceful polls.

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