Kumasi NPP National Conference: Road to Unite and Break the Eight

All been well and by the Grace of God, the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) will hold its National Delegates Conference this weekend in Kumasi, the capital of Ashanti Region, which is the stronghold of the Party. For all the eight general elections to date, Ashanti Region is the only region that has score all eight for the NPP. So, is it by coincidence or the act of providence of God that in its desire to break the eight, Ashanti Region is chosen for the conference which will pave the way for the foundation of Campaign 2024?

I want to stress that the Party should come out more united and tolerant from this conference than ever before. In 2016 the Party went into general elections and its presidential candidate, H.E. Nana Akufo-Addo, won with 984,570 more votes than the second placed candidate, H.E. John Dramani Mahama of the National Democratic Congress (NDC). The NPP also went into Parliament with 63 more seats to gain an absolute majority.

In 2012, H.E. John Mahama won by 325,863 votes and the NDC had 16 more seats in Parliament to gain an absolute majority. Come 2020, the NPP’s H.E. Nana Akufo-Addo retained the presidency with 517,405 extra votes but the NPP returned to Parliament with zero advantage.

By applying the arithmetic principle of if-more-less-divide, if H.E. John Mahama had 325,863 more votes in 2012 and the NDC gained 16 more seats in Parliament, then by the natural order of if-more-less-divide, in 2020, with President Nana Addo gaining 517,405 extra votes, the NPP should have gotten at least 25 extra seats in Parliament.

So, what actually happened? The Party went into 2020 divided. An honourable fellow who had joined the Partyin 2011, found himself an elected national vice Chairman in 2014 and became National Chairman in 2018. Ideally, with such high offices, one must be at least five years active member of the Party, before he or she is considered for high office. This fine gentleman has become the first national chairman of the NPP who had least addressed issues of concern of the Party.

Going into 2024, the NPP is very determined to break the Eight and run at least twelve straight years of governance. For this to be possible, some of the Party’s constitution must be amended. In 2020, imposition of candidates on some constituencies led to the loss of seats. If President Nana Addo could win by over five hundred votes, the Party should have at least twenty-five extra seats. In that election, the Party made sure sixty-five MPs went unopposed and fifteen lost their seats. Assuming these seats were contested in the primaries, it could be likely that the Party would win those seats and have 152 seats against 122 for the NDC. With that number and thirty seats advantage, the drama or soap opera going on in Parliament today would not have happened.

In Article 11 of the NPP Constitution, there is a portion which states that for a parliamentary candidate to be selected, A member applying for nomination as the Party’s Parliament Candidate, for any Constituency shall be a registered member and a voter in the Constituency, which he or she seeks to represent, provided that, in appropriate cases, the National Executive Committee, in consultation with the Regional and Constituency Executives, may dispense with the requirement.

Where, in appropriate cases, means? This portion is often abused by top executives of the Party, who will make sure their cronies are favoured over clear favourites who can win the seat. This is something the Party must address and scrap. It cost us absolute majority in Parliament.

The beginning of this year saw people proposing this or the other Party member to step in as presidential candidate for Elections 2024. The National Executive Committee has come out times without number to make supporters of these gentlemen to cease fire for now. Yet from within the top hierarchy, untouchables have come out to openly declare for a particular person, which violates the directives from Party Head Office. To date no one has been punished or even cautioned.

Now for the coming conference, Head Office has again read the Riot Act at a time when Kumasi is said to have been covered with blankets of bill boards, banners and posters advertising each of those who have expressed their desire, privately or publicly to contest the Presidential Primaries.

In order to give peace a chance, I will strongly suggest that things are allowed to be and those bill boards, banners and posters advertising party members’ choices are allowed to stay. Rather party members must be made to adhere to strict rules that will be against the any disruption of the entire programme, even as they can advertise their choice.

Let peace and unity prevail, because if NPP gets out of Kumasi with bruises, it will be very difficult to unite and fight 2024 together to break the Eight. If top party members can declare for someone, why can’t other party members declare for their choice?

Together, NPP must unite to break the eight.

The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect The Chronicle’s stance.


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