General News of Tuesday, 4 December 2018
The NDC door is shut for the man who has been nursing presidential ambitions over the past 12 years.
Dr. Ekwow Spio-Garbrah did not pick a presidential nomination form at the close of deadline day Tuesday.
It is in protest of the nomination forms sold at 20,000 cedis which he says is selling out the party’s pro-poor political ideology of social democracy.
The politician who has held three ministerial positions in two NDC administrations with a combined 8 years ministerial experience says the amounts involved are ridiculous.
The party officials appeared not to care about his dare to close nominations. They have closed it.
The charismatic politician is part of a disgruntled party of 8 aspirants who signed a petition to the NDC’s Council of Elders demanding a review of the fees and several issues with the management of the presidential primaries.
Together the eight aspirants have threatened to boycott the process.
Two have broken ranks and picked up forms. Dr. Spio Garbrah, Alban Bagbin and Goosie Tanoh have stuck to their threat.
Dr. Spio Garbrah repeated the argument of their petition, the Council of Elders were not consulted over the guidelines on the presidential primaries.
He still has faith in the strength of this argument and the sense of responsibility of the Council of Elders to respond to their petition.
The Council of Elders has remained tomb silent, at least for now.
“If the council of elders don’t want to speak on this matter we have other options to explore” the 2006 NDC presidential aspirant indicated his ambitions will not just roll over and die.
“All options are on the table for sure”, he told Joy News’ Evans Mensah on Top Story Tuesday.
In political reality, there is more likely one option after internal party procedures fail to exact a favourable response.
Law courts. But he would not say except to stress a legal opinion that once it is proven the Council of Elders were not consulted, the process to elect the next flagbearer is flawed and illegal.
“This is a straightforward one sentence in English”, Dr. Garbrah praised for his communication skills simplified the controversy to consultation with the NDC elders.
The former Communications minister is not alone in this me-against-the-party subplot in the NDC’s 2020 presidential primaries.
The 65-year old pointed to Alban Bagbin and noted that the report circulating in the media that he has picked a form is untrue.
Minutes later, Alban Bagbin who has been in Parliament since 1992 confirmed he did not pick a form, even though the form has been picked in his name.
“The man who picked it did not have my approval,” he said adding, the man behind the picking of forms is eyeing his Nadowli Kaleo West seat.
Must the NDC brace for legal suits? Not really. According to Deputy General Secretary Peter Otukunor the party embraces it.
The unperturbed deputy stated on Top Story, “they are allowed under law to take any action. We will encourage that, we will not discourage that at all”.
“If you have not picked a form then you are not an aspirant”, “the door is completely shut”, he offered different sentences to waterproof his emphasis.
The Council of Elders were consulted, he said, becoming the first to publicly respond to the disgruntled aspirants’ most cherished argument.
Maybe not the figure for the nomination and filing fees, he said and offered his own legal opinion that “the constitution did not say we should consult the council of elders on figures”.
Peter Otokunor who is a registrar of the party’s social democratic ideological training school sees nothing ‘un- Social Democratic’ about paying 20,000 cedis for nomination fees and 400,000 for filing fees.
If the Council of Elders ever come out and agree with him, Dr. Ekwow Spio-Garbrah’s presidential campaign team to outdoored on October 18 may well remain indoors from December 4.