The immediate-past National Chairman of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Jake Otanka Obetsebi-Lamptey is worried about the sudden flurry of people who want to lead the party in the 2016 elections, saying the “party is walking on tight rope” due to their activities.
“What I am concerned about is that the people of Ghana are looking to the NPP to rescue them from all the terrible things that are happening. However, the NPP is now also showing that it does not recognize that the nation is facing a crisis. We are much more concerned about our own petty grievances and personal agendas instead of the national agenda.”
Mr. Obetsebi-Lamptey, in an exclusive interview since leaving office as NPP Chairman, expressed his opinion on many issues from petty squabbles in the party to the current economic crunch in the country.
“I know as I speak, I am going to receive a lot of backlash, but I will maintain that not everything should come down to an election. Inside the NPP itself, when we go to national executive committee, national council meetings and so on, we do not always rely on elections. We build consensus. We negotiate so that there is no need for an election.”
He said that the leadership of the party should first let everybody feel that their views are important and that those who have serious talent will be given an opportunity to serve in the government that will come from an NPP victory.
He also said that consensus-building had become a concern “because now we have people who all want us to know that their ambition can best be realized when they lead.”
He said it was time for NPP leaders to “sit in conclave and hammer out among ourselves about who should lead us.”
He said Ghanaians were keenly monitoring the situation and added that “they will listen to all the nastiness that will come out and they could say if you cannot manage your own affairs how can you manage the country? It is unnecessary. We do not have to put the country through it.”
Things fall apart
“I am very much concerned at the moment about what the NPP is doing because we have a government that is giving us probably the worse time we have had in Ghana’s political history.”
Mr. Obetsebi-Lamptey said he would like the NPP to show “at this time that we recognize that there is a crisis in front of Ghana.
He asked the party to “behave like British when they faced the threat of Nazis Germany.”
“They recognized that there was a war that they had to fight and so girded resources for that war. The NPP should be girding itself for the fight against the NDC to rescue Ghana and be sending a message to the people that it recognizes how serious the position is.”
“We should recognize that 2016 is really special. It is an election that we must by all means win and we must be seen to be doing everything to win it. I am afraid that what I am seeing is not helping to feel that. When I talk to people they also feel that the NPP is not serious about the fight ahead of us.”
He said, “We should send a signal to Ghanaians that we recognize the seriousness of the problem facing the country. The economy is in complete shambles, education is a disaster, health is getting even worse and every single thing is beginning to crumble and fall. Everything in this country is now a priority. This is really not the time for us to be quibbling and quarrelling about who should lead us.”