Campaign activities halted in constituencies The National Democratic Congress (NDC), the country's largest opposition party may give the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) a good run for its money. However, at the grassroots level, the NDC is dying softly due mainly to financial constraints facing its Parliamentary Candidates.
At some constituencies toured by The Chronicle recently, NDC activities towards the forthcoming general election had virtually collapsed, but those of the NPP were on the increase, thereby sending signals that the NDC was dying.
Among such constituencies are Damongo-Daboya and Sawla-Kalaba, both in the Northern Region.
At the outskirts of Damongo for example, the only political party flag visible is that of the NPP with “Vote for Alex Seidu Sofo as MP and President J.A. Kufuor as President” boldly written and hoisted across the main Damongo- Sawla Road.
The Chronicle's investigations into why the NDC in particular was so absent on the ground in the constituencies cited, revealed that the Parliamentary Candidates, a retired Director of Education, Mr. Nelson Nyinifo Yakubu for Damongo-Daboya, Mr. Dari an educationist and an assemblyman for Sawla-Kalba, do not have the financial means to embark on any meaningful campaign.
At both constituencies, our investigations indicated that the NDC is potentially capable of winning the elections with a little effort.
The problem, however, facing these constituencies and perhaps others is, financial constraint, which the party needs to address immediately if it wants to win those seats.
At these constituencies, it was realized that there were no posters and flags of the NDC. Some members of the party were worried that despite promises by the National Executive to send some party flags, up to now none had arrived even though the elections are only a few weeks away.
This, according to them, had put them in a fix, and they, therefore, appealed to the leadership of the party to provide them with campaign materials or consider the elections in those places as already lost.
The best so far done to re-waken the campaign in theseconstituencies was a visit by the Member of Parliament for Bole Bamboi, Mr. John Mahama and his campaign team on October 10 to Damongo, the constituency capital.
Mahama's campaign team danced through the principal streets, announcing the presence of the party, which attracted hundreds of supporters.
Earlier, rumors were rife that the NDC would not file any candidate to contest in the constituency, thus making Mr. Sofo the sole candidate, but these were discounted by Mr. Mahama's team.
The presence of the NDC Communications Director at Damongo had also put some fear into the NPP candidate, because almost all the people allegedly hired by him to wear his T-shirts deserted him and joined the NDC campaign.
Mr. Mahama, on his way to his constituency made a stop over at Larabanga and Sawla also, where some party supporters were waiting for him at about 11 pm to address them.
He debunked rumors that the NDC was not filing Parliamentary Candidates and told them that Mr. Nyinifo Yakubu is the man to battle things out with the NPP's Sofo for the Damongo seat while Mr. Dari has taken over from the incumbent MP as candidate for Sawla, so they should vote for them.
In an interview with The Chronicle, Mr. Mahama said since the two Parliamentary Candidates were capable of winning their seats, he would support them financially in their campaign.
He appealed to the National Secretariat of the party to speed up things to enable the constituencies to campaign effectively.