Kumasi, Oct 20, GNA - Mr. George Ayisi Boateng, a leading member of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) on Thursday launched his campaign for the Ashanti Regional Chairmanship of the party with the pledge to unite all factions of the party in the region.
He said it would be the height of hypocrisy for anybody to state positively that the NPP is as solid in Ashanti, its stronghold as it used to be.
Mr Boateng pointed out that most members in the party have become disillusioned and therefore exhibiting apathy towards party activities and membership mobilization.
"The Ashanti Region has been the rock of the NPP and as such any loss of support has dire consequences on the electoral fortunes of the party in any elections."
This, Mr Boateng said, therefore called for urgent injection of a new level of dynamism into the party in the region, adding, "This is especially so because the 2008 elections would be a different story altogether as President Kufuor will not be eligible to contest." For the NPP to retain power after President Kufuor had left the scene and stay in power for a very long time, there was the need to give the party a facelift to transform it to become the party it used to be, he added.
"I will rejuvenate and invigorate the NPP in Ashanti. There is a serious crack in the party and therefore I see myself as the most compromise candidate".
Mr Boateng regretted that the party was being portrayed in certain quarters that its democracy had turned into what he called "monecracy" when it comes to choosing representatives and said this perception would be a thing of the past when he becomes the regional chairman. "I will fight tooth and nail against this unfortunate phenomenon which has crept into our body politic".
The NPP in Ashanti has a great contribution to make towards election 2008 and there was therefore the need to plan strategies that would make the party in the region a formidable political force to confront the challenges that would be posed by the opposition National Democratic congress (NDC).
"The NDC having been in opposition for some five years is desperate to return to the corridors of power and would be leaving no stone unturned to achieve that goal".
He said the NDC, conscious of the fact that another defeat in the 2008 elections could sound the death knell of the party would move heaven and earth to turn the tables in its favour that is why the NPP needs to close its ranks and harness the full human and material resources of the party to fight the 2008 elections and this therefore, calls for innovation, vision, drive and discipline.
"I believe that I process these qualities that is why I am presenting myself as a candidate for the Ashanti regional chairmanship of the party".
Mr Boateng pledged to run an open administration, be in constant touch with the rank and file of the party in all the constituencies. "My vision is to see a more vibrant party and continuous stay in power by the NPP with highly motivated members".
Mr Kwadwo Owusu-Afriyie, popularly called "Sir John" a legal practitioner and a leading member of the party in Ashanti, corroborated Mr Boateng's assertion that the party was no longer as formidable as it used to be in Ashanti.
He said the fight to retain power was not therefore going to be easy and that there was the need for a dedicated person to lead the party in its bid to retain power. Mr Owusu-Afriyie said Mr Boateng has shown time and again that he was prepared to fight the NDC and therefore, urged delegates who would be electing the regional executive to stand solidly behind him, adding that Mr Boateng has been selfless and loyal to the party.