The National Chairman of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), Mr Kofi Portuphy has stated that the establishment of the Ghana Institute of Social Democracy (GISD), a political school of the party would help revive the activities of cadres within the party.
According to him, the cadres were key elements that the party needed to rekindle to enable it recapture power from the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) in 2020.
Cadres, during the era of the Provisional National Defense Council (PNDC), were trained as members of the Committee for the Defense of the Revolution (CDR) under the regime of Flt Lt. Jerry John Rawlings in the 1980s to defend the ideologies and activities of the 1979 and 1981 revolution.
At the official launch of the GISD at the party’s headquarters in Accra on Thursday, Mr Portuphy said the establishment of the school would also help grow the party’s support base, particularly at the grassroot level.
He explained that the cadres had contributed in diverse ways towards the development of the party from its formation period until today and added that it was about time the party rekindled the activities of such persons.
Mr Portuphy, who described himself as a beneficiary of the cadre work said unlike in the past where people had to hide to learn about the work of cadres, the party wanted to use GISD to provide equal opportunities for all persons desirous of learning about the principles and philosophies of the party.
According to him, most of the party’s cadres were trained outside the shores of the country particularly, Cuba, and the then Soviet Union.
He stated that when party members were taught about the ideological setup of the party, it would help all party loyalists to contribute to the party’s quest for power in the next elections.
The General Secretary of NDC, Mr Johnson Asiedu Nketsia said the school had already established some links with similar institutions in both Africa and other parts of the world.
He explained that in February 2016, the party’s Functionary Executive Committee approved the formation of the party’s school to spearhead the inculcation of the party’s values, ideals, principles and philosophies in its members.
He said the school's working committee was charged with the responsibility to work out the modalities for establishing it.
Mr Asiedu-Nketsia said the school would serve as a research centre for the changing global ideological perspective and realign itself with the global trends in social democracy in order to promote and strengthen the party’s philosophy.
That, Mr Asiedu Nketia added, would train party comrades in the fundamental principles and ideologies of the party as well as other relevant programmes related to politics and social democracy.
For his part, the interim Rector of the institute, Dr William Ahadzie said the main focus is to ensure that party faithful understand the principles and ideologies of the NDC.
He said the school will mainly focus on the values and principles of social democracy.
He said some of the programmes the institute would run include the philosophy of the party, history of the party, history of Ghana, constitutional studies, party management, political communication, leadership skills, elections and electoral systems.
The function was also used to inaugurate the institute’s Programmes Committee, Academic Affairs Committee, Administration Committee, Finance Committee, and Estate Committee.