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27.10.2015 Feature Article

NPP Constitution Under Attack – Due Process Disregarded (Part 2)

NPP Constitution Under Attack – Due Process Disregarded (Part 2)
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As a member of this party, I am duty bound to protect the constitution of the party. My motivation is rooted in what is JUST and RIGHT for a liberal party like ours. With my conscience being my guide and the constitution being the supreme authority of the party, I will do just that!

Article 9

D. The National-Chairperson

i) The National Chairperson shall preside over all meetings of the National Delegates Conference, the National Congress, the National Council, the National Executive Committee and the Steering Committee of the National Executive Committee.

ii) The National Chairperson shall be the convener of all the meetings of the National Delegates Conference, the National Council, the National Executive Committee and the Steering Committee of the National Executive Committee. iii) In the absence of the National Chairperson the 1st National Vice-Chairperson shall act in his or her place.

iv) The National Chairperson shall not be a candidate for the office of Member of Parliament or President of the Republic.

E. The National Vice-Chairperson

i) There shall be three (3) National Vice- Chairpersons ranked first, second and third, according to the number of votes received at the election at the National Annual Delegates Conference. The 1st National Vice-Chairperson, being the most senior, shall act for the National Chairperson in his or her absence, and the others in descending order as the occasion may require. The National Vice-Chairpersons shall assist the National Chairperson in the running of the Party and shall be assigned such duties as may be prescribed by the National Council, the National Executive Committee and the National Chairperson.

NOTE: Our party constitution is clear as to who is mandated to convene all of the National Delegates Conference, the National Congress, the National Council, the National Executive Committee and the Steering Committee of the National Executive Committee. So far as the National Chairman, Mr Paul Afoko, was within the jurisdiction, capable and able to discharge his duties, the purported NEC meeting called by the party’s National 1st Vice Chairman and any activity taken within the purported meeting was null and void.

The National Chairman is the ONLY person clothed with the authority under our party’s constitution per Article 9 (2) D ii to convene any such meetings.

Again, assuming without admitting that the purported report by the National Disciplinary Committee was to be laid before NEC, the proper thing which out to have been done was for the National Chairman to have convened a meeting after NEC had received the report through the General-Secretary’s secretariat within a stipulated time of 14 days for the committee to either reject, modify or adopt same (See Art 4 (4) b).

Once the meeting is convened and opened by the National Chairman and the report laid before the committee, the National Chairman then hands over the gavel of authority to his 1st vice to chair the meeting in accordance with the law of natural justice and standard procedure. Be mindful that, as at the time the report was being prepared and laid before the purported National Executive Committee meeting, the National Chairman was still in charge and mandated to carry out his constitutional duties.

In the matter of a complaint lodged to the National Council against the National Chairman, Mr Haruna Esseku, as he then was, he convened and opened the meeting and excused himself when the complaint was laid before the National Council. He did so not just because of leadership, but, because the constitution prescribed so.

However, in a rather bizarre circumstance, and in flagrant violation of Article 9 (2) D ii, the National Disciplinary Committee per their illegal report, caused the National 1st Vice- Chairman, Mr. Freddie Blay to convene a meeting to adjudicate on the matter if the National Chairman was not willing to do so – this was a blasphemy against our party constitution. Where did the National Disciplinary Committee, derive its powers to usurp the authority of the National Chairman under Article 9 (2) D ii of the NPP constitution? Does the National Disciplinary Committee possess such powers to instruct or direct the 1st National Vice Chairman to convene a meeting?

Again, within 24hrs after the report was presented to Mr. Freddie Blay, he hurriedly convened an illegal NEC meeting to uphold the illegality perpetrated against the party. It must be noted that as at the time the meeting was even convened by Mr. Freddie Blay who is the beneficiary of the illegal report, the National Chairman, Mr. Paul Afoko, had not even sighted the report to even consider convening a NEC meeting within the period of 14 days as stipulated by Art 4 (4) b of the NPP constitution. If this is not a civilian coup de’ tat, then tell me what it is?

In my considered opinion based on point of law and facts herein, the purported NEC meeting convened by the Freddie Blay and any decision taken in the meeting thereof, is of no legal effect and therefore void.

ARTICLE 4

c) There shall be a National Disciplinary committee, which shall be one of the Standing Committees of the National Council and shall be composed as follows:

i. One (1) person appointed by the National Executive Committee. • One (1) representative of the Parliamentary Group. • One (1) representative of the National Council of Elders. • One (1) representative of the Constitutional Committee. • One (1) representative of the Regional Chairpersons. • Three (3) persons appointed by the National Chairperson in consultation with the National Executive Committee, one of whom shall be designated Chairperson of the National Disciplinary Committee, provided, however, that at least two (2) out of nine (9) members shall be women. At least five (5) members of the committee, including the Chairperson, shall be present to constitute a valid meeting of the Committee.

NOTE: The NPP constitution is clear on the composition of the National Disciplinary Committee. I aver that, Most Rev. Dr. Asante Antwi. Dr Kwame Addo Kuffuor, Nana Yaw Osei Esq, Ayikoi Otoo Esq, Hon. W.O Boafo, Madam Amma Bame Busia, Pof. Aaron Michael Ocquaye Snr and Alhaji Abdul Rahman (Alhaji Short) are the only persons duly appointed and sworned-in under Article 4 (C) i of the NPP’s constitution to constitute the membership of the National Disciplinary Committee.

I aver that the constitution makes it mandatory for at least two women to be part of the National Disciplinary committee. This provision has not yet being discharged.

I aver that the ‘illegal importation’ of Madam Eugenia Kusi, MP for Tarkwa as a member of the committee without laid down procedures as provided under the NPP constitution and her participation in the proceedings of the committee as a member of the committee and her signing of the purported committees report, also renders the whole exercise of the committee null and void.

Article 9

C. The National Executive Committee

1. Subject to such directions as the National Council may issue, the National Executive Committee shall be responsible for directing and overseeing the operations and activities of the Party.

2. i) The National Executive Committee shall consist of:

• The National Chairperson • Past Presidents • Past Vice Presidents • The sitting President • The sitting Vice- President • The Presidential Candidate • The Presidential running mate • The 1st National Vice-Chairperson • The 2nd National Vice-Chairperson • The 3rd National Vice –Chairperson • The General Secretary • The two Deputy General Secretaries • The National Treasurer • The Party’s Parliamentary leader • The National Organizer • The two Deputy National Organizers q) The Chairperson of the National Council of Elders r) The National Women Organizer s) The two Deputy National Women Organizers t) The National Youth Organizer u) The two Deputy National Youth Organizers v) Regional Chairpersons or their representatives w) One(1)representative of the Parliamentary Group x) One (1) representative of the Founding members y) One (1) representative of the Patrons z) The National Nasara Coordinator

ii) Chairpersons of Sector Committees, past National Chairpersons, past Presidential Candidates, past Running Mates, past General Secretaries, Directors at the National Secretariat and such other members as the National Executive Committee may determine, shall be entitled to attend meetings of the National Executive Committee but without the right to vote.

4. The National Executive Committee shall meet at least once in every Three (3) months .The presence of at least one-third (1/3) of the members of the National Executive Committee shall be necessary to Constitute a quorum of the Committee.

NOTE: The purported National Executive Meeting that upheld the purported and illegal suspension of the Mr. Paul Afoko, which was unprecedented in the history of our party, was not attended by the key figures of our party on the National Executive Committee such as the National Chairman, Paul Afoko, the peerless John Agyekum Kufuor, Former President of Ghana, Nana Akufo Addo, 2016 Presidential Candidate and his running mate, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, 2nd Vice- National Chairman, Mr. Sammy Crabbe, the General-Secretary, Mr. Kwabena Agyepong, Minority leader, Hon. Osei Mensah Kyei Bonsu and the National Women’s Organizer, Madam Afisa Otiko Djaba. Does this not even render the meeting ‘impotent’ in the eyes of well-meaning patriots and Ghanaians?

The purported NEC meeting failed to even form the 1/3 quorum as mandated and so prescribed by the NPP constitution. There were only 11 members of NEC who attended the purported meeting. This I believe, has falling short of the prescribed number of Members needed to form a quorum. It must be noted that NEC consists of over 40 members.

I cannot finish this legal opinion without reference to the celebrated case of Tuffuor Vs Arttoney- General, which excites students of constitutional law ‘like a lecture in metaphysics will excite a 7 years old boy’. This was a case which overturned the unconstitutional removal of Chief Justice Apalloo, as he then was, from his office as Chief Justice of Ghana. Fortunately, the lead counsel whose erudite legal opinion was applauded by the Appeal Court, which sat in as the Supreme Court was our Presidential Candidate, Nana Akufo Addo.

The actions of the plaintiff, Dr Amoako Tuffuor, member of NPP National Council, amounted to the duty of the citizenry in protecting the Constitution and ensuring that its provisions were properly adhered to. This I believe should be the spirit and inspiration that must guide all of us.

I urge all true patriots to rise to the occasion and save our party’s constitution which is the supreme authority under which all of us, must succumb to.

I shall not be cowed into submission by death threats. My steps and destiny are ordered by the TGAOTU.

"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere” - Dr. Martin Luther King Jnr

Chief Obosu Mohammed

NPP Member, Mfantseman

Chief Obosu Mohammed
Chief Obosu Mohammed, © 2015

The author has 22 publications published on Modern Ghana.Column: ChiefObosuMohammed

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