Raging Storm In Northern Region NPP
... As two heavyweights bash each other ... Amid allegations & counter allegations Another bout of accusations and counter-accusations has erupted in the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) in the Northern Region.
This storm, blowing from the party's front in the region's capital between the two main contestants for the regional party chairmanship position, Chief Daniel Bugri Naabu and the incumbent chairman, Alhaji Salifu C.O.P, seems to bear some possible confusion and division among the leaders and supporters of the NPP, which might lead to its demise.
Meanwhile, the aspiring NPP Northern Regional Chairman, Chief Daniel Bugri Naabu, at the launch of his campaign in Tamale, emphatically blamed the outrageous performances put up by the NPP in the north during the 2000 and 2004 elections on what he termed as the sitting chairman's incompetence and selfish conducts.
“Not because of the perceived wrath against NPP government in Dagbon, but through the divide and rule tactics by Alhaji Salifu C.O.P. and also not because the NDC had more favour in the eyes of the people or was more popular than NPP in this region, but because C.O.P did not perform creditably,” he fired.
According to him, the regional chairman, who was supposed to work assiduously towards the unification of the members and sell the policies of the NPP to the people, was rather engaged in enriching himself by way of lobbying for contracts for himself and his few allies.
Chief Bugri Naabu, who accused his opponent of overstaying in power since 1992, also alleged that, majority of the party supporters have not been at peace with him because of the purported disunity his administration has brought in the party.
The Chronicle however gathered from sources that, there had been some kind of personal hatred between the two gurus of the party, Bugri Naabu and Alhaji C.O.P, which demands an immediate intervention from the National Executives of NPP to help maintain peace, unity and tranquility among the two and their supporters.
The paper again uncovered that, the aspiring Regional Chairman, Chief Bugri Naabu, after losing to the current chairman on two occasions, eventually crossed carpet to the opposition NDC, through a resignation letter to the then NPP General Secretary, Late Agyenim Boateng in 1996.
Not only campaigning against the NPP on NDC platforms, Bugri Naabu was also said to have subjected the party to humiliations by way of condemning their policies and revealing some party secrets.
In an interview with the press in Tamale, Bugri Naabu admitted resigning from the NPP in 1996, but denied ever revealing secrets or condemning the policies of the party.
Attributing the allegations to the tactics put up by his opponent, Alhaji C.O.P, to discredit him, Chief Bugri disclosed that, he left the party to join the NDC because he could not contain the frustration and verbal attacks, among other things, from his challenger.
He noted that, he was later in 1997 accepted into the NPP through the instrumentality of Mr. Jake Obetsebe Lamptey and has since been paying his membership dues.
Mr. Bugri Naabu told the press that he was the only person who could market the party for possible victory in the forthcoming elections and therefore urged the members to do away with Alhaji C.O.P, whom he said has failed the party for long due to his archaic ideas.
Also in an interview with The Chronicle, the current Regional Chairman of NPP, Alhaji Salifu C.O.P , who is also a renown contractor in the Northern Region, rubbished the assertion by Mr. Bugri Naabu that he had been creating division among members and causing the downfall of the party in the north.
The Chairman also attributed the party's defeat in the north to the fact that Bugri Naabu had created the impression in the north that the party was too tribalistic and did not respect democracy.
“It demands the full collaboration of all members and leaders of NPP to command the votes of the people. But here is the case whereby some of us will try to command the minds of the voters from one end and at the other end a stomach politician and confused person like Naabu, who knows much about the party, is causing mess and tormenting the party,” he said, adding “To what effect did he contribute to the party in the 2000 and 2004 elections, if he is saying that he came back into the party in 1997?”
Alhaji C.O.P therefore challenged Chief Bugri to produce a copy of the application letter he wrote to the National Executives for his readmission into the NPP with regard to the party's constitution.
Fascinatingly, however, a big political party, like NPP, which is also the ruling party in the country now, whether deliberately or whatsoever, does not have its own regional office or secretariat, as compared with the opposition NDC in the Northern Region.
The two contestants, Alhaji C.O.P and Bugri Naabu, promised their preparedness to build an office complex for the party during their interview with this reporter, when they respectively retained and voted to power.
A political watcher who spoke to The Chronicle on condition of anonymity advised the NPP hierarchy to comment on the issue before it escalates into violence that would mar the already fragile peace prevailing in the region.