NPP Moves For Early Congress

Nana Akufo-Addo   and Alan Kyerematen
The New Patriotic Party (NPP) rose from a National Executive Committee meeting yesterday with a resolution to go for an early congress to elect a flagbearer for the crucial 2016 general elections.

This is to give whoever gets elected as the party’s flagbearer ample time to embark on an effective campaign ahead of the 2016 general elections, a source at the NPP’s Asylum Down national headquarters told DAILY GUIDE yesterday.

The National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting is said to have rejected a proposal tabled by the General Secretary of the party for opening of nominations in July, leading to congress in December.

The NEC members could not agree on the proposed date for opening of nominations leading to the congress.

Crucial decision
General Secretary of the NPP, Kwabena Agyei Agyepong, was said to have initially proposed July 7, 2014 leading to congress on or before December 6, 2014, but this was not accepted by the NEC which insisted on early congress to avoid a fractured party because of acrimonious campaign.

The proposal had opening of nomination on July 7, closing on July 13, while filing of nomination is between August 6 and 8, with congress for electing the presidential candidate in December 6, 2014.

This was said to have generated a debate among members of the body.

A member of the NEC was then said to have made another suggestion for nominations to be open on June 6, 2014 to allow for an early congress between August and October 2014.

Even though the majority of members of NEC were said to have supported the idea for the opening of nominations on June 6, the matter was said to have been deferred for a final decision to be taken by the National Council, the second highest decision-making body after congress.

NEC as a body was therefore said to have tasked the Steering Committee of the party which consists of the elected national officers to go and work out a new roadmap leading to an early congress with the opening of nomination in June.

The issue of appointment of persons to fill vacant positions including those of Deputy General Secretary, Deputy National Organiser, Deputy National Women’s Organiser and Deputy National Youth Organiser among other positions was said to have also come up for discussion during the meeting.

But that was said to have also been deferred to the next NEC meeting since the list was not ready.

Interestingly, the names of some persons who are supposedly nominated for these vacant positions have already started flying in the media.

They include that of former Volta Regional Chairman who contested the Vice Chairmanship position of the NPP but lost, Kenwuud Nuworsu and Prince Doyina, who have been pencilled to become Deputy General Secretaries.

National Chairman of the party, Paul Awentimi Afoko, was also reported to have raised issues about the current composition of the National Council of the party and stressed the urgent need for a re-composition of the body.

The National Council is the highest decision-making body after Congress and it is the body that would have to ratify any decision of the NEC including those concerning the date for congress before it comes into effect.

It is however not clear when the supposed re-constitution or re-composition of the National Council would take place, for it to become functional, in view of the crucial decisions expected to be taken by the party in the coming days.

But that suggestion has been turned down by the regional executives who strongly believe that they have elected their representatives for the National Council.

Come what may, sources said the NPP would go for an early congress to elect a flagbearer in order to embark on a vigorous campaign leading to the 2016 general elections.

By Charles Takyi-Boadu

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