Tension is said to be mounting in the Kwesimintim constituency of the National Democratic Congress following sharp disagreements among the executives over moves to raise GHC4,000 out of proceeds from public toilets to pay a debt in respect of credit purchase of “waakye” incurred in the name of the party by the constituency chairman, Alhaji Alidu Mahama.
The GHC4,000 worth of 'waakye', which was bought on behalf of the party from 2010 to 2012, was said to have been used to feed party supporters and polling station agents during the 2012 elections.
The food was prepared and supplied by the proprietress of ‘ONE IN TOWN', a popular 'waakye' joint at the Tanokrom Ahmadiyya area.
But two years down the lane, all efforts by the 'waakye' seller to retrieve her money had proved futile, leaving her with the only option of dragging Alhaji Alidu to a commercial court in Sekondi where it was ordered that the chairman’s private bungalow should be sold out to settle the debt.
A notice was accordingly issued and posted on the building, inviting prospective buyers to come and buy it.
In an effort to save the embattled chairman from the embarrassing situation, some of the executives of the party have suggested proceeds from public toilets in the area should be used to pay the debt to ensure that Alhaji Alidu’s house is not sold.
But some of the executives are kicking vehemently against the moves to settle the debt with proceeds from public toilets.
According to them, funds were released from the national headquarters to cater for all expenses incurred during the stipulated period and do not know how the GH 4,000 debt came about.
The executives have therefore urged their chairman to go and look for money elsewhere to settle that debt without involving the party.
Speaking on local radio stations yesterday, the Propaganda Secretary, Alhaji Nii Maaquaye Dawda, insisted that the NDC did not in any way owe any 'waakye' seller and urged members of the public to see the debt as a personal one of the chairman.
He also rubbished claims by the chairman that the debt was incurred during the biometric registration exercise and the December 7 and 8 general elections.
Alhaji Dawda vowed that it would only be over his dead body that proceeds from public toilets, which are ‘owned’ by the party, would be used to settle that 'senseless' debt.
The Propaganda secretary recalled that during the biometric registration exercise in 2010, orders were received from national headquarters that all constituency executives should get themselves actively involved in the exercise by going round to ensure that all eligible voters were registered.
He insisted that enough funds were released to cover the 40-day exercise, adding that all polling station agents who worked for the party during the 2012 elections were also catered for by headquarters. “So it is only the chairman who knows how the GH 4,000 'waakye' debt came about,” he maintained, adding “he should stop wasting our time and ears with such trivialities.”
Niii Maaquayer described the debt as a strategy by some disgruntled members within the party to break the constituency's foundation and prevent it from snatching the seat in 2016.
The New Statesman has gathered that the 'waakye' debt is not GH 4,000 as members of the public were made to believe but rather Gh 48,000. All efforts to contact Alhaji Alidu for his side of the story have proved futile because his mobile phone has been switched off.
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