Some New Patriotic Party (NPP) aspirants contesting various national executive positions have expressed dissatisfaction at the decision of the Election Committee to disallow them from making speeches during the party’s congress in Tamale.
According to them, although the decision would not hinder them from winning their respective positions, it would have afforded the candidates who could not visit all the constituencies in the 10 regions the opportunity to have a final word with the delegates.
The candidates are Mr Paul Afoko, aspiring candidate for the chairmanship; Mr Kwabena Agyepong, aspirant for the General Secretaryship; Mr Sammi Awuku, a candidate for the National Youth Organiser position and Madam Efua Kyerewaa Nyantakyi (Mama Joyce), who is vying for the position of National Vice Chairperson.
The candidates spoke to the Daily Graphic yesterday after a closed-door meeting with the Election Committee of the party.
The meeting, which lasted for close to three hours, provided the platform for the committee to discuss the modalities and rules governing the elections.
Aspirants were also allowed to voice out their concerns, especially issues pertaining to proxy voting and speeches on election day.
Mr Afoko said although most of the candidates were not satisfied with some of the decisions of the committee, there was nothing anybody could do, except to adhere to the modalities set for the elections.
“I would have thought that the committee should have allowed candidates to give out their final speech to the delegates. Notwithstanding, I believe it cannot cause any misfortunes,” Mr Afoko said.
He, however, assured the party supporters of his commitment to do what pleased the leadership of the party.
Madam Nyantakyi, however, lauded the decision of the party to engage candidates in a meeting to discuss how best to ensure successful elections.
“We have never had the opportunity to meet the Election Committee and the National Executive Council (NEC) to discuss issues of this nature. This is the second time and I think they have really done well,” she said.
However, she said, although the decision of the committee to disallow speeches during the election was not proper, it would not have any negative effect on her since she had managed to send her message to the delegates.
For his part, Mr Awuku said although he was not entirely satisfied with the explanation given by the committee, there was nothing any candidate could do but to comply.
Mr Awuku, therefore, called on the delegates to stick to the rules to ensure peace and unity before, during and after the congress.
Mr Agyepoong said his prime objective was to support the party and work to ensure victory in 2016, adding that “the decision of the committee would not pose any danger”.
He said despite the decision of the committee to disallow speech during the election, he was of the conviction that he would win the seat.