It’s make or break for the NPP, at least that is the scenario being enacted after the party’s polling station elections that ended almost a week ago. There are overwhelming allegations of deliberate attempts to disenfranchise many potential voter-delegates in the elections.
As it stands, there are 17 polling station elections that have been put on hold because of various court injunctions. From various checks, the campaign team of the Vice President, Alhaji Dr. Mahmudu Bawumia are those being accused of orchestrating clandestine moves to get perceived delegates of other presidential aspirants either disqualified or disenfranchised.
General Secretary aspirant, Musah Superior was first to register his utter disgust and protest against attempts to get some candidates including a presidential aspirant head starts in the impending NPP internal elections. Presidential hopeful, Boakye Agyarko also expressed worry about the trend in the party’s polling station elections, which to all intends and purposes is tailored to suit some particular individuals, including sitting NPP executives, who intend seeking re-elections.
However, supporters of other presidential aspirants and others seeking for higher positions have sworn to desist attempts to impose on the party, delegates who are likely to vote in the presidential and national executive primaries. The polling station elections provide the baseline or the very foundation of all high-profile elections in the NPP this year.
A candidate that is likely to get a chunk of the polling station executives has the chance of winning any other high-ranking elections in the party—be it presidential or national executive elections. That easily gives out the intent why Alan Kyerematen, for instance sponsored and paid for the registration of all polling station aspirants even before prospective candidates thought of picking registration forms.
There’s the popular believe within the NPP that the Vice President also gestured similarly, like that of Alan Kyerematen’s. My sorties at the hub of NPP, show that there are some disgruntled members who are prepared to split ranks with the party, if their grievances, relating to the conduct of the polling station elections, are not adequately addressed by the NPP national executives.
The logical worry however, has been that most of the national executive members who are seeking for re-elections are the very people behind the scheme to get their favourites as delegates. So how will they ensure a smooth or an even playing field that the protestors are calling for? One veteran politician, obviously on the side of Alan Kyerematen, reminisced how similar act in 1979 made it impossible for the Popular Front Party (PFP), a party of the UP leaning, which the NPP ascribe to, to win the 3rd Republican election.
Mr. Victor Owusu, who became the presidential nominee of the PFP refused to submit himself to internal electoral process to become the PFP flagbearer. He was goaded on in his authoritarian posturing by other PFP stalwarts like J.H. Mensah, Attoh Quarshie among others, especially, folks from the Ashanti bloc.
Victor eventually became the PFP presidential candidate, but at a dire cost. One of the pillars of the UP-PFP tradition and a member of the “Big 6”, William Ofori-Atta (Paa Willie), led a group in the PFP to form a splinter party that came to be known as the United National Convention (UNC). The UNC even supported the PNP, the Nkrumaists party at the time against its own Victor Owusu during the run-off in the 1979 presidential election.
In turn, the PNP appointed Harry Sawyerr, the UNC’s Member of Parliament for Kpeshie, paving the way for by-election in Sawyerr’s constituency. It’s clear that the PFP’s chances in the 1979 elections, was jolted at birth by Victor Owusu’s intransigence and the vexed decision by Paa Willie to form a rivalry party to contest the ’79 elections. Interesting days ahead for the NPP in regard to their Breaking the 8 agenda. How will the polling station elections affect the chances of the party, heading into 2024?