The campaign embarked upon by Friends of Nana Konadu Agyeman Rawlings (FONKAR) and members of the former First Lady’s campaign team to stop regional voting at the impending national delegates congress of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) appears to have been defeated, following the decision by the party to stick to the original plan.
The National Organiser of the party, Mr. Yaw Boateng Gyan, told The Chronicle in an interview yesterday, that the data base of all the delegates had been prepared on a regional basis, therefore, it would be very difficult for the party to adopt other means of voting at the congress. Gyan further told The Chronicle that the Electoral Commission (EC), which has also expressed concern over the mode of voting at the congress, cannot dictate to the party, and that it had only been invited to supervise the elections.
He also noted that since the voting at the congress was an internal party matter, the EC can only offer advice, but not order them to change a decision they had already taken.
The National Organiser noted that this was not the first time a political party in Ghana was organising internal elections on a regional basis, noting that the New Patriotic Party (NPP) used a similar method in their last presidential and parliamentary primaries.
One of the concerns of Nana Konadu’s campaign team was that if voting on a regional basis was allowed, President Mills would get to know those who voted against him and subject them to victimisation.
Yaw Gyan, however, disagreed with them insisting that neither the president nor the party could subject any delegate to victimisation. According to him, President Mills was aware that both the Ashanti and Eastern regions voted against him during the 2008 general elections, but since becoming President, he had not demonstrated any bias against them.
Yaw Gyan, who once served as the Western Regional Organiser of the party, hinted that since notable personalities like President Mills, Vice President John Dramani Mahama, ex-President Rawlings, Nana Konadu Agyemang Rawlings and the First Lady, Naadu Mills, will all be at the Sunyani congress, security at the Coronation Park, venue of the congress, would be very tight.
He, therefore, advised those who have nothing to do with congress, to stay away, since all trouble-makers would be ruthlessly dealt with by the police and military men who would be deplored at the venue.
According to him, the area would be condoned off by the security men, and that only those with accreditation would be allowed in.
He, however, said the nearby Sunyani Day Secondary School (SUDASS) had been secured by the party for those who may decide to follow the delegates to Sunyani.
According to him, a giant screen would be provided at the place, where proceedings at the main congress would be beamed live for them.
He cautioned that the SUDASS grounds had not been prepared for followers of any of the presidential candidates, and that any attempt by any group to monopolise the place would not be tolerated by the party and the security men who would be deplored to ensure security at the place.
On accommodation for the delegates, Mr. Yaw Gyan said the regional executives of the party had visited hotels and towns where their delegates would be accommodated.
According to him, delegates from the three northern regions – Northern, Upper East and Upper West – would be accommodated at Techiman, whilst those from Ashanti and Greater Accra regions would also be accommodated in Kumasi.
The rest of the regions – Western, Volta, Brong Ahafo, Eastern and Central – would all be accommodated at Sunyani.
All delegates should be at the congress venue between 8 and 10:00 a.m. each day of the congress.
Source Ghanaian Chronicle