The General Secretary of National Democratic Congress, Johnson Asiedu Nketia has served notice to NDC delegates in the forthcoming National Delegates’ Congress that he will not use money and other enticements to persuade them in voting for him.
Mr. Asiedu Nketia popularly called General Mosquito launched his campaign to be retained as the ruling party’s General Secretary in Accra on Monday December 28.
Speaking at a colourful but simple ceremony of party loyalists and other observers, Mr. Asiedu Nketia said his performance as the party’s scribe in opposition and how he translated the NDC’s hitherto dim shot at power into victory, coupled with his service to the tradition, should be enough motivation for the party to retain him as its General Secretary.
Asiedu Nketia, who likened himself to a tool in the party’s hands, was eulogized by many party stalwarts who thronged the Kama Conference Hall to lend him support.
In an interview with Citi News after his campaign launch he said, “It is wrong for an aspiring labourer to bribe the master before being hired”.
Mr Nketia said he will back-out of the race if money becomes the decider.
“I don’t intend to release funds for the purpose of buying votes from people that is wrong, if people demand money from me before voting I will back out.” He said.
He added that he is ready to serve the party and the people of Ghana and that anybody who pays for votes is not committed and not ready to serve the people. He called on other aspirants to avoid the use of money in inducing delegates to vote for them.
He added that NPP’s example during its congress to elect a flagbearer and the 2008 elections was not a good one to follow.
Asiedu Nketia added that depending on what a party does with differing opinions, the rancor generated can either be destructive if not properly managed.
The allusion was in apparent reference to the seeming cracks in the party.
According to him, he intends to harness those energies and use them constructively should he be retained as General Secretary of the party.
“Depending on what you do with that, it can be converted into destructive energy or constructive energy, I intend to harness those energies and convert them into a constructive one, in fact that has strengthened my position as a general secretary because if there are different shades of opinion then I can take the positions of everybody and shape out my own opinion,” he said.
It is so far not clear who the competitors of the incumbent General Secretary of the NDC are, however many reckon that he should contest unopposed. The party goes to Congress from the 15th to 17th January, next year in Tamale.
Meanwhile the General Secretary of the opposition National Patriotic Party, Nana Ohene Ntow has responded to comments made by Johnson Asiedu Nketia that the NDC should not follow the example of the NPP in using money to induce delegates to vote them into party positions.
Nana Ohene Ntow accused the NDC for introducing vote buying into the country’s politics. He said that everyone knows the NDC has a track record of material and financial inducements and that Asiedu Nketia had given a misguided example.
“I think that his example is a very poor example indeed… we had never known about ‘bontua’ politics until the NDC introduced it in the country, we had never known about key soap, matches, salt, ‘kako’ and money politics until the NDC introduced it in Ghana so I think that its totally out of place and a very wrong and misguided example that my colleague has given.”
Nana Ohene Ntow however, added that it is wrong to use money to subvert the will of the people.
According to him, the practice undermines the legitimacy of the inducer should he be elected.
“Having said that I strongly object to using material and money to influence and to subvert the will of the people. Elections must have a certain credibility and integrity to it and using money or material to subvert the will of the people for me is basically injustice because in the end the true will of the people will not be reflected,” he said.
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