General News of Wednesday, 11 October 2017
Groups of PNDC/National Democratic Congress (NDC) operatives and appointees including former regional and district secretaries, former Members of Parliament (MPs) and some former service personnel of the 64th Battalion have called on the National Council of Elders and National Executive Committee of the party to take all the necessary steps and measures to involve them in the ongoing peace-building and reconciliation exercise as recommended by the Kwesi Botchwey Committee report.
The groups said it has observed with some anxiety the lack of sincerity, candor and clarity of the whole exercise and wondered what the outcome may be if the signs and machinations going on were not checked as soon as possible.
The groups made the statements in a memorandum dated 22nd May, 2017, and chanced upon by Today which memo was sent to the party’s council of elders through the National Chairman to the founder.
One major concern raised by the groups in the said memorandum chanced upon by Today is the deep seated factionalism which has taken centre stage in the party, a phenomenon which the groups claimed, emerged under the leadership of the late President John Evans Fiifi Atta Mills, and has been deepened under former President John Dramani Mahama.
“It is the firm view of some of us that such an important crusade should not consist merely of visiting the grassroots to calm tempers, encourage and fund them to work but must go beyond that and undertake the crucial exercise of restructuring the party itself in certain aspects.
“Consequently, some of the critical issues to tackle in such an exercise should see the role of the CDRS and other revolutionary organs all of which are encapsulated within the United Cadres Front being properly redefined, re-energised and refocused within the context of party operations,”.
“After 25 years of unwittingly ignoring the cadres as a group in the structure of the party, we submit in the most emphatic terms that it is time for cadres under the canopy of United Cadres Front (UCF) to be integrated as a wing of the party,” the groups said.
They also insisted that the rebuilding exercise should consciously re-emphasise the pivotal role of the founder and other elders in the party and create or establish the convention for greater interactions with the presidency whenever the NDC is in power.
They argued that uneasy relationships that existed between the presidency and the founder hardly helped the party’s solidarity and the government’s wellbeing, adding that every effort must be made to avert its recurrence in future.
“Short of making a formal announcement to that effect, the executive had complained that the founder was undermining it by his public criticism while the founder had retorted that his advices and entreaties in private had been scorned leaving him with no option but to go public. Obviously, the aspect of public criticism which had hurt the most had been on allegation of bribery and corruption perceived or real,” the groups said.
“In a country where it has become fashionable for public, private and social media to make issue out of these twin evils, it becomes imperative for government to at least attempt to deal with this canker. It is warranted by our party’s commitment to the espousal and practice of doctrines of probity and accountability that monitoring and dealing with perpetrators must be a fundamental commitment of an NDC government.”
The groups also advised the party to extend an olive branch to Nana Konadu Agyeman Rawlings as part of the rebuilding process explaining that there have been defections from the NDC in the past-Goozie Tanoh and the Reform Movement in 2000, Obed Asamoah in 2006, both of whom returned and now Nana Konadu and the NDP in 2010.
The cadres argued that the current situation leaves the “Founder in an embarrassing quagmire and he finds himself, as they say, between the ROCK of SCYLLA and the WHIRLPOOL of Charybdis and it is commendable that he has kept his calm.”
“It will also be prudent in this exercise to engage the former First Lady of the 4th Republic and mother of the NDC, now estranged, in a healthy discourse to pave the way for her return into the party without any preconditions,” the groups pointed out.
…As advocates of reason, common sense and restraint, we will be within our rights in these circumstances to invoke the sacred pronouncement made by Our Lord Jesus Christ over 2000 years ago and say: “He that is without Sin let him cast the first stone!”
The groups finally indicated that times were rough and “out of joint” but the situation was not insurmountable.
“With diligence, patience, tact, commitment and a determination to clean up our act, in the areas of cadre integration, and reconciliation of the party, we should be able to rediscover victory in 2020.”