Daily Guide -- MADAM FRANCES Asiam, the embattled national women's organiser of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), has described the founder and leader of the party, Mr. Jerry John Rawlings, as a murderer, whose hands are soiled with blood. The peculiar revelation was disclosed at a two-day conference, named Founder's Forum held at the Karma Conference Centre, at Osu, Accra from November 8-9, 2005, at the instance of the Founder.
Addressing leading members of the party who received special invitation to the forum and who were encouraged to voice all matters “in their chests”, the former president told bewildered participants, that Madam Frances Asiam, on Saturday, November 5, between 2.30pm and 2.50pm, sent him two text messages, on his mobile phone.
The NDC Women's Organizer who labels herself as 'one woman thousand' is said to have stated in the text message that, Ft Lt JJ Rawlings is a murderer. “My hands are not soiled with blood, like you” one of the text messages to Rawlings read, according to him (Rawlings).
She also stated that the former president who is dubbed Founder of the party has no constitutional right to ask her to resign from NDC.
Rawlings told his audience that his immediate reaction was not to react to the messages sent by Frances, however after pondering for a while, he called her, and she (Frances) answered the phone.
While he did not disclose the details of the conversation between them after the name calling, he informed members that “although Frances is a good and firm organiser, she must be stopped in her tracks, from inflicting further damage to the party”.
It will be recalled that Madam Asiam recently, caused major ripples in NDC, when she revealed that she had been given ¢1.5 million, and a return trip to London, to enable her insult the national chairman, Dr. Obed Asamoah, on local radio stations and on Fm stations in London. Furthermore upon the encouragement of the former first lady, Nana Konadu Agyeman Rawlings, she engaged in a verbal and violent encounter with Madam Grace Omaboe, aka Maame Dokunu, at the Aviation Social Centre, earlier this year.
The forum, sponsored by the former president, was held strategically, in the absence of Obed Asamoah, whom the Rawlings faction has vowed to throw out of leadership.
Delivering his opening speech, Rawlings disclosed he had sleepless nights over Tamale, which he described as their strongest base in the past, but which certain party members were bent on splitting into two.
When Rawlings uttered those words, the recently elected Northern Regional chairman of NDC, Alhaji Sumani Zakari, jumped straight up and interrupted him. Speaking 'broken English', Sumani Zakari retorted, “we do elections and win. And you set committee for what?
I won't agree”.
Sumani denied all the allegations leveled against the conduct of the Tamale constituency elections, which Rawlings alleged include vote-buying, hijacking, and use of cutlasses and other offensive weapons.
According to Sumani, there is absolute peace within NDC in Tamale, and other parts of the Northern Region.
Soon after this, another member of the party, also from the North, interrupted Rawlings, and challenged his assertions that outside forces were causing the split in the Tamale constituency.
The challenger said if an NDC activist goes to a party congress with a cutlass and uses it against a fellow NDC member, how he (Rawlings) can accuse NPP of violence.
The challenger claimed that, over fifty (50) AK 47s (assault weapons) were produced and brandished about, during the confrontations at the last Tamale Conference.
“How then do you say that NPP is chasing us with guns”, he quizzed. Former President Rawlings also strayed into the Anlo Hobgetsotso festival, controversy describing the regent of the Anlo Traditional Area, Togbi Sri III, as a joker and a crook. He added that the regent was not the rightful person to occupy the stool.
While saying this, some Ewes in the room swiftly got up, and left the meeting, muttering that, it was not the right forum for the chieftaincy issue of the Anlos to be discussed.
After this, he launched another attack on the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the party, and blamed it for the defeat of Prof John Evans Atta Mills in the 2004 election.
At this juncture, Mr. Bede Ziedeng, acting general secretary, interrupted Rawlings. Ziedeng said Rawlings should desist from the blame-game; instead he should lay his blame at the door-step of the party hierarchy, for the defeat of Prof Mills.
The acting general secretary noted that how could the NDC have won the election when the leadership had set up two campaign offices, with different teams, and disclosed that NEC had no recognition during the 2004 campaign. When Rawlings interjected at this point, Haruna Iddrisu, the national youth organizer, also unceremoniously left the meeting.
Rawlings then turned his guns on Prof. Mills, whom he accused of failing to go round the country to thank the electorate who voted for him. “If I were you, I wouldn't wait for even, three months” and dismissed Mills' claims that he was waiting for NEC. On the other hand, he generously praised Mr. Ohene Kena, the Eastern Regional chairman whom he described as a “Goodman”.
According to Rawlings, Ohene Kena is not like those he helped to become millionaires, but who have turned their backs on him, and are using the money he helped them acquire, to buy people's conscience, and are building their own image.
Contributing, Hon Ben Kumbuor, asked NDC MPs, elders and supporters of the party to radically resist the up-coming People's Representation Amendment Bill, before it comes to Parliament, and pushes it away to 2008, when it will be too late to implement.
Kumbuor, appealed to the party faithful to package their resistance message by saying that Ghana's electoral system is not matured enough and so, Ghanaians living outside the country cannot be brought in now, to cast their votes.