NDC, NPP BATTLE READY FOR NORTHEERN SEATS
From Edmond Gyebi, Tamale
THE TWO giant political parties in Ghana, National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the New Patriotic Party (NPP) are both eyeing not less than 30 out of the 31 parliamentary seats in the Northern Region, to ostensibly prove their supremacy, acceptability and popularity in the area.
They continue to intensify their political campaigns with series of rallies, door-to-door visitations, press conferences and other activities in the region, and most especially hijacking the radio stations with political talk shows and debates, which seem to further entrench or whip up the political euphoria among the people.
The Northern region, especially the Tamale capital, is currently flooded with unprecedented flamboyant billboards, banners and posters, as well as other political party paraphernalia, just to make the parties more visible and attractive to eligible voters.
The Northern Regional Secretary of the NPP, Dr. Clifford Braimah, in an interview with The Chronicle, emphasized that the party was very sure of wrestling power from the ruling NDC in December, and also hoped of winning not less than 30 seats.
According to him, the NPP, apart from mobilizing resources to facilitate their campaign, had also built the capacities of members, especially the polling station agents on how to ensure effective supervision, monitoring and policing of the ballot.
Dr. Braimah asserted that the NPP had been inspired to winning the December polls by the poor performance of the ruling government and their continual failure of major campaign promises.
He was optimistic that in an event of a free, fair and transparent election, the NPP would record a one-touch victory to enable the implementation of the free Senior High School education policy.
He accused the NDC of using state resources for their political campaigns and also conducting extravagant campaign (with huge billboards and sharing vehicles and motorbikes).
On his part, the Northern Regional Secretary of the NDC, Alhaji Alhassan Yussif Umar told The Chronicle that the NDC was not only preparing for the elections, but “rather working at it”, which implies that the party would not leave any stone unturned, as far as retaining power was concerned.
He maintained that the NDC was aiming at 30, out of the 31 parliamentary seats in the Northern Region, and also increases the popular votes of their Presidential Candidate.
The NDC Regional Chief Scribe denied the allegation of the abuse of state resources and display of flamboyant billboards.
According to him, the party was modest in its campaign and was disadvantaged by the demise of the late flagbearer and President, John Evans Atta Mills, since the party spent over one whole month to mourn his death.
Alhaji Umar, who promised more developmental projects in the next NDC administration, was full of praise for the numerous development interventions by the John Mills-John Mahama government, under the better Ghana agenda.
He said the NDC under the better Ghana agenda had built several schools to replace those that were under trees, health centres, provided water facilities, electricity and supported the agricultural sector among others.
Meanwhile, this paper can state that unlike in the 2008 political season, the ruling NDC and its presidential and parliamentary candidates are ahead of their competitors, in terms of displaying gigantic billboards and colourful posters.
In addition, the regional NDC office and most of the constituency offices as well as pavilions of the party have been repainted and embossed with beautiful pictures of the candidates, depicting the readiness of the ruling party to market itself.
Even though the NPP follows suit in terms of preparation towards the election, they seem to have limited resources as compared to 2008 when they were in power. What seems to make the NDC more serious and purposeful is the nature of their regional office and where it is strategically located.
The NPP on the other hand is presently operating without a deserving Regional Office and other administrative tools to allow the Regional Executives efficiently work for the good of the party. The NPP regional office (12×12 single room) located at Aboabo Market is also serving as a store room for one bicycle seller.
The Regional NPP Chairman, Alhaji Haruna Tia a.k.a. Haruunbes who failed to honour his promise of constructing an ultra-modern party regional office for the party in his first 100 days of office during his campaign in 2009, now houses the party in his private residence at Gumani
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