Former President Jerry John Rawlings is contemplating taking over the party he founded, the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC).
He said the party has been ‘ambushed’ and ‘taken hostage’ by people who have little integrity, adding that the postmortem of the party’s massive defeat should be based on nothing but the truth.
“I wish I could say yes, but I think it sounds better in my ear to say that I want God to come and lead us because of the integrity factor,” he told the NDC Volta Regional Caucus last Thursday, pointing out that “God can be found in the truth.”
MPs in the region where the NDC has majority of its membership in parliament had paid a courtesy call on the former president after the party’s defeat.
Mr Rawlings, who was sidelined by the Mahama-led NDC during last year’s electioneering campaign after using him to win the previous elections, did not mince words when he said that integrity had been held hostage in the party.
He said the NDC can only restore integrity when it is able to diagnose its recent defeat in candour and truthfulness.
Ex-President Rawlings tasked the Volta caucus to help restore integrity in the party without delay, saying “It has been ambushed and held hostage. The time has come to free the truth.
“What our supporters need is candour. If you want them to stay united, if you want them to be a little strong, all you can offer them now is candour. Don’t engage in political talk of the past.”
Misuse Of Power
The former president said the misuse of executive power by some people had, with time, led to the detachment of the party from the people, stating that the intoxicating effects of power had made many leaders of the party and government impervious to reality.
“We adopted certain habits which were going to lead to failure and we were not seeing it. The mistakes were too obvious,” he observed.
The Member of Parliament (MP) for Ho West, Emmanuel Kwasi Bedzrah, who led the delegation, thanked the former president for the audience and indicated that the purpose of the meeting was to open channels of communication so that they could tap into his rich experience.
The absence of the former president on the NDC campaign trail last year was so conspicuous that it generated a serious debate among political pundits before and even after the elections.
Apart from Cape Coast where the NDC launched its national campaign in August, Mr. Rawlings was never seen at any NDC campaign event, including its manifesto launch in Sunyani, the Brong-Ahafo Regional capital, late September last year.
He refused to endorse President John Mahama when he attended the Cape Coast campaign launch, but asked the party supporters to wait till after the elections before he would go round the country ‘to rebuild the party.’
He also refused to disclose whom he voted for on December 7 when asked, saying that his vote was secret.
By William Yaw Owusu