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27.09.2005 NDC News

NDC may be having problems, but

By Palaver
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NPP IS IMPLODING!

The MacMillan English Dictionary for Advanced Learners (International Students Edition) (2002) defines 'to implode' as:

1. "If something such as an organisation or an economic system implodes, it is completely destroyed by things that are happening within it; collapse"; and

2. "To break up violently and fall inwards, or make something do this: an internal vacuum that caused a vessel to implode".

That is exactly what is happening to the ruling party today. The NPP is imploding, but its media allies have successfully hidden this from the public by deliberately highlighting the superficial problems of the NDC and therefore creating the impression that it is rather the NDC that is about to disintegrate.

And how have they done this?

Highlighting negative NDC stories

They have done this by consciously treating as Front Page news every little disagreement within the NDC. They have done this by discussing, re-discussing and re-rediscussing on radio and on TV every little disagreement within the NDC.

They have done this by exploiting the admittedly youthful and naïve executive members of the NDC and provoking them to trade insults and reveal inner-Party secrets on air and on the screen.

After all, what is happening in the NDC?

It is no news that former President Jerry John Rawlings, the NDC Founder, does not get on well with Party Chairman Dr. Obed Asamoah.

It is no news that NDC strategist Captain Kojo Tsikata (Rtd.) has long fallen out with Party Founder J. J. Rawlings. It is no news that 2004 Party Flagbearer Professor John Evans Atta-Mills is not the favourite of Party Chairman Dr. Obed Asamoah. It is no news that Dr. Tony Aidoo, NDC NEC member, is a free thinker both within the NDC and in the wider national political environment who cannot be gagged. And so on and so forth.

Yet these are the issues that the pro-NPP state-owned newspapers, Yaw Boadu-Ayeboafo's 'Daily Graphic', and Ajoa Yeboah-Afari's 'Ghanaian Times', and the sycophantic NPP private newspapers continue to recycle on their front pages, while Eva Lokko's state-owned GBC (Ghana Broadcasting Corporation), which has sold its soul to the NPP, as well as the state-owned GBC and its regional FM affiliate stations endlessly discuss them as if the NDC is on the verge of collapse.

Downplaying negative NPP stories

Meanwhile, major disagreements and major conflicts within the ruling NPP are never given media coverage at all, or when they are, are tucked away in regrettably illegible small print in the inside pages of the newspapers, or are presented as manifestations of the so-called democratic culture of the NPP.

NDC's Kwamena Ahwoi's Resignation

Take for example a little matter like last week's resignation of Mr. Kwamena Ahwoi as NDC Director of Research in a one-line, 14-word letter to the Acting General Secretary of the NDC.

The story was given a big front-page flyer in last Friday's issue of the 'Daily Graphic', with the story itself carried on the 'Politics' page of the paper, complete with one of the nicest pictures of Mr. Ahwoi

NPP's Lord Commey chastises Party hierarchy

Yet in the 'Ghanaian Times' of the next day, tucked away at an inconspicuous corner of page 14, was the following damning description of the internal situation of the NPP by no less a person than Lord Commey, the National Organiser of the NPP:

'According to the National Organiser of the NPP, Lord Commey, a number of party members had become disenchanted because the NPP had failed to recognize their contributions from the difficult times in 1992 to the present day that the party is in government.

He however, called on all party members to unite and not to allow others to sow seeds of discord within their ranks.

Mr. Commey——also stressed the need for the party to be built on consensus instead of factions, which would not augur well for its development.

'Bear in mind that whoever takes the party to court should consider himself or herself dismissed', he warned.'

NPP activist sues NPP

On the very day that the 'Ghanaian Times' reported Lord Commey as having issued this warning, Saturday, September 24, 2005, the 'Daily Graphic' also published the following story at page 13 under the headline: 'NPP activist takes party to court':

'Mr. Yaw Kwakye, an NPP activist at Mampong-Ashanti has filed a writ at a Kumasi High Court seeking a perpetual injunction to restrain the party from holding the Mampong constituency delegates' conference until the election of polling station executives'.

DOWN MEMORY LANE

Now let us take our minds down memory lane in the month of September 2005, specifically September 1-September 23, 2005, and let us go through the pages of the newspapers, to see how many NPP versus NPP conflicts have been presented, to compare their degree of seriousness with alleged NDC internal conflicts, and to examine whether, if the stories had been presented on the scale and with the prominence of the stories about the NDC, the inevitable conclusion would not have been one of an impending implosion within the NPP.

Drama at Tain DCE confirmation

Drama unfolded during the second ballot to confirm the President's nominee for the post of DCE for the Tain District Assembly in the Brong Ahafo Region, when 10 out of the 44 assembly members boycotted the election.

Besides, the mandate of seven government appointees who were suspected to be against the nominee were revoked and replaced with new ones at the ceremony.

(Daily Graphic, Thursday, September 1, 2005, Page 16).

Fracas in Northern Region NPP (Tamale)

A Group calling itself 'The Supporters of Bugri Naabu' has stated that Daniel Bugri Naabu, who is contesting the Northern Regional Chairmanship of the NPP is still a member of the party.

They have therefore challenged a group calling itself the 'Northern Regional NPP Youth for Growth and Development', to prove the allegation that Bugri Naabu had lost his membership of the NPP——

'We are fully aware that there are some faceless people behind this youth group who are desperate to hang on to power in the regional branch of the party, and are employing defeatist tactics to achieve their selfish ambitions', it added——

'Bugri is seen by supporters of the NPP in the Northern Region as a Messiah who has come to save the party from collapse', it said.

(Ghanaian Times, Saturday, September 3, 2005).

Impasse in Eastern Region NPP (Koforidua)

One Nana Yaw Boakye has observed that factionalism and winner-takes-all attitude has crept into the party in the Eastern Region which day in and day out, continues to create impasse between party executives at all levels.

Accordingly, these unresolved issues between party executives have collapsed and continue to destroy party structures everyday.

Nana Boakye warned of a possible political party revolution that would be staged by party members to throw out executives and replace them soon if the national executives fail to step in and resolve the disputes raging in the party in the region.

He observed that the party executives, right from the constituency to the national level, are in disarray because the party had been hijacked by certain individuals who have money.

'They come with the party and go with the party and when they come, assemble a few selected friends, not necessarily executives of the party, to function as the executives', he pointed out.——the party is torn apart by factionalism, with the groups supporting separate individuals who they think can provide their means when they are selected or nominated to higher offices in the government—

He expressed the fear that if the party does not put its house in order, it shall be overtaken by events.

'What is frightening is that, huge sums are spent to entice people to vote for them, whereas these monies could be used to organize the party at the constituency levels and even pay salaries of some officers of the party', he pointed out.

(Chronicle, Thursday, September 8, 2005, Page 12)

.NPP held to ransom by rich individuals (Koforidua)

The former Eastern Regional Secretary of the NPP and an aspiring Regional Chairman of the Party, Mr. Seth M. Ahyiah, has stated that it was sad to note that the NPP was held to ransom by a few, rich individuals who were now controlling the party.

According to him, the right persons to contain situations were not available, as indiscipline had crept into the party and there was no recognition of the efforts of the founding fathers of the party at the grassroots levels.

(Chronicle, Friday, September 9, 2005, Page 8).

A Kufuor-backed aspiring Chairman will lose (Ho)

A sampling among NPP supporters in the Volta Region wrote off the incumbent National Chairman, Mr. Haruna Esseku, on the assertion that he did not handle the crises within the party effectively——

Party activists——contended that though Mr. Stephen Kwabena Ayensu Ntim, First National Vice Chairman and also an aspiring Chairman, has the potential, he would not be an independent person, if the President was supporting him.

According to them, they would not vote for him, pointing out that it was the same President Kufuor who allegedly supported Mr. Haruna Esseku, but unfortunately the Chairman could not perform.

'Yes, Ntim is very good, but if he is being supported by the President, then we will like MacManu [Western Regional Chairman and another aspiring National Chairman]. But if it is the other way, then Ntim', they stated——

Clearly the survey in the region indicated that members were not prepared to endorse a candidate having the support of the current President. The survey revealed further that they would not allow an Akan or Ashanti to lead the party.

(Chronicle, Friday, September 9, 2005, Page 15).

NPP MP versus NPP DCE in Ahanta West (Agona Nkwanta)

In Ahanta West last week, the unending conflict between Hon. Samuel Jonfiah, MP for the area and the DCE, Mr. Kwesi Biney——showed no sign of abating even though Mr. Biney was confirmed despite the good efforts of Jonfiah's supporters to derail his confirmation on his re-nomination by the President as DCE for the second time.

They took their battle to the grassroots where Biney's ambition to annex Jonfiah's title as MP for Ahanta West——was beginning to pan out following his moves to put out candidates to challenge the pro-Jonfiah executives in the constituency.

However, Biney could not exploit his 'development clout' to his advantage as his expectation was given a massive thumbing down. Honourable Jonfiah surprised top brass within the party when almost all his men were elected to take charge of all key positions within the constituency.

The election——saw the front men of Mr. Biney lose seven key influential positions in the party but manage to secure two positions.

(Chronicle, Monday, September 12, 2005, Page 1).

NPP advised to bury differences (Tamale)

A Group calling itself the 'United Elephants Club' has appealed to the rank and file of the NPP to bury their differences and work assiduously to enable the party to win future elections——

'The Asawase and Odododiodoo by-elections, which the NPP lost to the NDC, are already their seats, irrespective of the win, but the NPP should simply let us learn from our mistakes and correct them', it emphasised.

This was contained in a release signed by the Chairman of the Club, Mr. C. K. Gyamfi, and issued in Tamale on Wednesday.

'The foot soldiers should be motivated to start work now in order to win future by-elections, should they come', it stressed.

(Daily Graphic, Monday, September 12, 2005, Page 15).

NPP members have lost their integrity (Tamale)

An aspiring General Secretary of the NPP, Mr. Kwadwo Afari, has——said 'there was the need for the party members to vote for new leaders who have the courage to confront and fix internal and conflicting personal and opportunistic agenda by those who really do not care if we lose or retain power'.

According to Mr. Afari, this was not the time for the members to be finding faults with each other but to rededicate themselves to finding leaders with new visions and reject those who sought leadership positions because it was fashionable to do so.

'I want to be General Secretary——to help raise the fortunes of our party——-to restore honour and integrity to our party members', he promised.

(Daily Graphic, Monday, September 12, 2005, Page 16).

NPP appointees creating a mess (Wenchi)

A former NPP Women's Organiser for the Wenchi East constituency, Madam Rose Adade, has cautioned the NPP over its waning popularity in the country——

According to her, 'the love and truth that existed in the NPP that won it power in the 2000 general elections and the subsequent maintenance of power in 2004 has faded out and if care is not taken, our party would go back and queue in the political line and that would take it more years to see the light of power'.

The former women's organiser——noted that because of the absence of truth and love on the part of the leadership of the party, most of the party supporters were no longer interested in championing the cause of the party, hence its poor performance in the recent by-elections.

She said the margin by which the party's results in the recent by-elections had reduced, clearly demonstrated that the former giant was dying——

Madam Adade stated that most of the government appointees - Ministers, DCEs and ambassadors - were not worth appointing, because they were creating a mess for the party.

(Chronicle, Tuesday, September 12, 2005, Page 15).

Knives out for Bosome-Freho NPP Chairman (Asiwa)

Sixty out of 67 polling station Chairmen in the Bosome-Freho constituency in the Amansie East district have passed a vote of no confidence in the constituency chairman, Mr. Yaw Amoah Gyaami—

He is basically being accused of standing between the developmental efforts of the MP for the area——

Amoah Gyaami, who is also a government appointee to the Amansie East District Assembly, reportedly walked out of an Assembly meeting on August 19, 2005, while the MP was giving progress report on the proposed Bosome Rural Bank at Asiwa.

His disregard for authority and party executives was manifested last August 29, 2005, when he snubbed the regional chairman who had tried to resolve an impasse between him and the constituency executives at a meeting in Kumasi.

(Chronicle, Friday, September 16, 2005, Page 8).

NPP National Organiser expresses disgust (Accra)

The National Organiser of the NPP, Mr. Lord Commey, has damned scurrilous attacks by various aspiring candidates jostling for positions within the party as it prepares to go to its national annual delegates' congress in October this year.

Mr. Commey, who expressed disgust, described those attacks as unjustified and untenable——

He could not fathom why the aspirants could not help in consolidating the party's democracy and help to win the next elections, but are rather going on the rampage against party officials to suggest that nothing had been done in terms of structures.

(Chronicle, Friday, September 16, 2005, Page 15).

Hell breaks loose at NPP constituency executive meeting (Oforikrom)

Hell broke loose yesterday at Silicon Hotel in Kumasi where election of NPP Oforikrom constituency executives was scheduled to take place, but called off following violent clash between two factions in the constituency, culminating in the police firing ten volleys of warning shots to disperse an angry crowd.

It all started about 1.00 pm when an unknown group of thugs emerged from nowhere, besieged the place and started attacking some of the delegates believed to be in the camp of the constituency chairman, Mr. Lawrence Akwasi Prempeh.

About 15 thugs spotted at the scene——came to disrupt proceedings of the election, launching several attacks on perceived opponents.

It was not clear as to who brought them but it was gathered that the MP for the area, Mad. Elizabeth Agyeman, who has a faction in the constituency, might have hired them to execute her mission.

(Chronicle, Monday, September 19, 2005, Page 1).

Haruna Esseku denies Kufuor (Accra)

National Chairman of the NPP Mr. Haruna Esseku, has declared that he will seek re-election at the party's national delegates' congress in November this year——

Mr. Esseku made it clear that he was not the choice of the Castle nor President Kufuor's preference——

(Daily Graphic, Monday, September 19, 2005, Page 13).

NPP constituency offices closed (Koforidua)

Conspicuously clear during a tour of some constituencies in the Eastern Region, it was discovered that most of the NPP offices were under lock and key, with some converted into trading stores by landlords for non-payment of rent, telephone and electricity bills.

Further investigations revealed that the party offices were also locked because of internal squabbles, factionalism and non-payment of salaries to those who run them, which has created division among party supporters.

(Chronicle, Friday, September 23, 2005, Page 8).

NPP Regional Executives lack vision (Tamale)

A retired military sergeant, Abdul Karim aka 'Karim Soldier', who is aspiring to be Chairman of the Northern Regional branch of the NPP, has described the administration of Alhaji Abdul-Rahman Salifu (COP), the current Chairman, as a failure and that it lacked vision and mobilisation acumen, leading to the party's inability to win votes in the region in the last general elections.

'Indeed the present executive have woefully failed us and we do not only need a change but a super change', he intimated.

On Mr. Bugri Naabu, (another Chairmanship aspirant), he said, 'Majority of our members have written him off and do not consider him as one of those who can bring success to the party; besides nobody would want him to be a chairman of this great party and be living and holding press conferences in Accra when the real work would be lying idle in the Northern Region'.

(Daily Graphic, Friday, September 23, 2005, Page 13).

Murder at NPP constituency executive meeting (Akropong-Akwapim)

Meanwhile, in late August, it was reported that one person was murdered and several others injured when thugs organised by the NPP MP for Akropong, Mr. William Ofori Boafo, invaded a meeting of the Akropong constituency executive of the NPP and attacked and severely brutalised several of them, resulting in the death.

AN IMPLODING PARTY

The above compilation is for one month - September - only. A journey back into the newspaper back numbers reveals the NPP as a truly imploding party, with the factional, internecine and fratricidal struggles straddling horizontally the geographical spread of the country and vertically from the polling station level right up to the National Executive Committee level.

And unlike the NDC's internal crises the worst form of which takes the washing of the party's dirty linen in public on the airwaves, on the screens and in the print media, those of the NPP go beyond the verbal to the physical, including fisticuffs and the use of deadly weapons which, in the case of the Akropong-Akwapim incident, resulted in the murder of one person, a matter that is currently under investigation by the Akropong-Akwapim police.

What further evidence of an imminent implosion does anyone need?

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