Two of the three remaining aspirants in the flagbearership race of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Alan Kyerematen and Francis Addai-Nimoh, have asked for more time to enable them campaign for votes.
They claim the remaining days left for them to campaign for the actual congress to elect a flagbearer for the party, slated for October 18, 2014, were not enough for them to reach out to delegates in all the 275 constituencies in the country to canvass for votes.
Two of the five aspirants who were shortlisted for the primary during the party’s Super Delegates’ Congress held on August 31, 2014—Joe Ghartey and Kofi Osei-Ameyaw—have since stepped out of the race and declared their support for Nana Akufo-Addo, the leading contender.
Sources at the party’s Asylum Down headquarters yesterday hinted DAILY GUIDE that the Alan Kyerematen and Addai-Nimoh had petitioned leadership of the party to revise the date and give them ample time to do their campaigning.
Former Health Minister, Dr Richard Anane, was first to raise issues with the date when he mounted a campaign platform to endorse the candidature of Alan at the weekend during the latter’s campaign launch at Abeka Lapaz in Accra.
Apart from describing the three months’ campaign period given the aspirants as ‘unjustified,’ he asked, ‘How can a losing candidate accept to support the winner?’
Francis Addai Nimoh
Speaking on Accra-based Citi FM, Addai-Nimoh said, ‘We have only 48 days remaining for the main election to be conducted and we think that that period is inadequate for over 141,000 delegates to be interacted with by the aspirants in the 275 constituencies nationwide.’
According to him, the time frame renders him ineffective for any meaningful campaign to convince delegates, insisting the period was not practical for the aspirants to get their messages to the delegates.
He therefore agreed with his colleague aspirant, Alan Kyerematen, that the October 18 delegates’ congress be postponed to a later date to enable them to reach out to the delegates, believing that postponing the congress would be in the interest of the party, if the national executives considered his petition.
For him, organising the congress on the scheduled date was likely to ‘deny the delegates of having access to the aspirants so that they can assess each one of us and make an informed decision to vote for whoever they want to vote for.’
However, he indicated that the decision lay with the NPP’s National Council, but he was certain that ‘it should not be difficult for the National Council to have a second look at its decision for a review.’
Sources said the National Council would meet on Thursday, September 18, 2014, to consider the petition of the two.
The party’s National Youth Organiser, Sammi Awuku, has asked all the three aspirants not to hazard the risk of having high hopes the scheduled date would be reviewed, even though he said it was possible.
Speaking on Peace FM’s ‘Kokrokoo’ morning show programme, he said ‘So far as the National Council has taken a decision, be serious when you’re campaigning and work towards October 18. Unless the Council sits up again and says that maybe in view of A, B, C & D the Council has changed the date.’
‘That’s up to the National Council. But we, as officers of the party now, the date given to us by the National Council is 18 October,’ he said.
By Charles Takyi-Boadu
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