The number three aspirant on the New Patriotic Party’s Chairmanship race ballot paper, Professor Christopher Ameyaw Akumfi, has indicated that his reason for contesting the position was to give back to the party.
Prof Akumfi, a former Minister of Education in the erstwhile Kufuor administration, says he had benefitted a lot from the Elephant Party and felt it was time for him to serve in the capacity of a Chairman, especially in these crucial times.
“I belong to the party, and I think that in times of crisis, you need a volunteer to come on board and help resolve a number of issues. That has been my primary aim. I have benefitted from being a leading member of the party, having been dragged into government by President Kufuor,” Mr. Ameywa Akumfi said.
Outlining some key changes he intended to make in the party when given the nod, Prof Ameyaw Akumfi said he would ensure that the discipline, commitment and unity that had been thrown to the dogs would be restored.
On Discipline, the man who is known for making some major reforms in the education sector while a Minister, and Director at the Ghana Education Service due to his strictness, said the level of indiscipline in the party was overwhelming, and that it was a contributing factor to some of the internal wrangling being witnessed.
He cited instances where people who had defied the party’s rules, broken away, stood for elections as independent candidates and won to the detriment of the party were rather hailed and treated as saints when they return to the party.
He explained that such acts made people who had worked their socks off for the party, whether they lose or win elections, unhappy, and that it was one of the things that created confusions in the party.
Mr. Ameyaw Akumfi said he would ensure that the rules of the party were strictly adhered to, to bring some sanity into the party.
Speaking on Commitment, the 76-year-old man, who has served the Elephant Party since he became the Member of Parliament for Techiman North in 2008, said the level of commitment from the youth in the party had dwindled.
He noted however, that he did not blame these youth for their apathy, but rather the lack of a welfare system that would ensure that those youth were well taken care of after their hard work.
Mr Ameyaw Akumfi said, when elected as a Chairman, he would ensure that there would be in place a welfare system that would cater for the needs of the party members.
“… Look critically at the foot soldiers to see whether indeed the party they have support all their lives can remember. So when I see low levels of commitment I don’t just leave it as an observation…lets motivate them so that they can work.
“One way of motivating people to work will be the establishment of a welfare system. I have been preaching this that we should ensure that we put measures in place to have this thing done. We can do it. It is doable. We mobilise funds for elections so we should be able to mobilize funds for a welfare system.”
Finally, on Unity, Mr. Ameyaw Akumfi said he will work hard at uniting the party when giving the nod to be the party’s secretary.
He said the lack of unity in the part is what resulted in the equal numbers that the country is witnessing in parliament.
He noted that no government wanting to do serious business will be happy such equal strengths and hence called on the delegates to rally behind him to bring back the unity into the party to enable them win the 2024 elections.
“Failure for the party to come together especially after the presidential primaries in this era will be a disaster, clear and simple. Whether we like it or not the opposition will not let us sleep and that is what they are suppose to do…It is up to us to remain united before and after the elections and I have promised myself to work hard at it.”
Asked what he will do if he does not win the election, Prof Ameyaw Akumfi said he will sell his ideas to whoever wins and help ti implement should the person buy into it.