General News of Saturday, 24 November 2018
Member of Parliament and Ranking Member for the Defence and Interior Committee James Agalga says he is not stunned following the heated election results of the National Democratic Congress’ national executives.
The only surprise for Agalga, he told Samson Lardy on Joy News’ Newsfile Saturday, was the overwhelming number of delegates and observers leading up to the election.
“The Congress stirred 9,000 delegates and 5,000 observers,” he said. “Besides a few hitches here and there, the elections went very, very well.”
One of those “hitches” Agalga mentioned, was disagreements between delegates in the Ashanti and Greater Accra regions. Delays in voting were spurred by Ashanti region delegates, who argued that they should be first to vote since they were the ones who traveled all the way from Kumasi to do so. It was nearly 5:ooA the next morning with still no decided winners in most categories, Myjoyonline reported last Sunday.
But of all the hiccups, it was NDC’s Adu Asare, who lost his campaign to serve as Deputy General Secretary, Agalga recalled. According to reports, Asare claims he was misrepresented at the polls and alleges that masterminds conspired to ensure he lost the election.
“[Asare] traveled the entire breadth of the country and spent lots of money. Sadly, he lost miserably,” Agalga said. “Some say he would have lost anyway. The [voting] process was slow and laborious because this is the first time we’ve hosted a Congress of this magnitude,” adding that “Asare meant well for the party, but no election is perfect.”
Similar to Agalga, Martin Kpebu, a private legal practitioner, expected the elections’ outcome, except that previously, the party was typically seen as a party for Voltarians and Northerners. But the newly-elected Samuel Ofosu-Ampofo – an Akan-speaking member of Parliament – as NDC’s Chairman, means more diversity among the party’s leaders, he noted.
“It represents new branding for the NDC. It is good,” Kpebu said. “It represents a shift and helps to revitalize the Akan-speaking people.”
He added that Ofosu-Ampofo’s appointment will attract hefty numbers during the 2020 general elections.
The Volta region has always been seen as “the world bank of the NDC,” he continued. “Since it looks like Mahama will win the ticket, they should also bring an Akan-speaking VP.”
It would bring balance to the NDC ticket, he said, considering that there are currently seven Voltarians on the party’s executive committee.
NDC primary elections are scheduled to take place during the first half of 2019.