Alan's resignation premeditated — NPP
The governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) has described the sudden resignation of former Trades and Industry Minister, Alan Kyerematen, as premeditated especially after failing to notify the party leadership of his intention prior to his declaration.
It said choosing to resign from the party through a press conference instead of engaging the party executive ahead of his announcement spoke volumes of Mr Kyerematen’s plot.
The General Secretary of the NPP, Justin Kodua Frimpong, in a press conference at the party’s headquarters in Accra yesterday; recounted that after the August 26 Special Electoral College, the National Chairman visited Mr Kyerematen on behalf of the party in an attempt to bring all the 10 presidential aspirants together.
During the visit, he said, Mr Kyerematen did not portray any sign of resigning from the party or going independent.
While respecting his decision to contest the 2024 presidential election as an Independent candidate, the General Secretary said since 1992, key party people had expressed interest in leading the party and the country but those who failed to succeed never abandoned the party.
“Since 1992, several party faithful have had the vision to lead the party and, subsequently, lead the country, but sadly, as nature has its own course, only a few have had the opportunity to achieve that vision.
“Party faithful who never had the opportunity to lead never resigned from the party but continued to serve, some until they were called to eternity,” he stated.
Response to allegations
The former NPP presidential hopeful, Mr Kyerematen, in a press conference at the Movenpick Hotel in Accra last Monday announced his decision to resign from the party and contest as an Independent candidate in the 2024 general election, provoking mixed reactions from Ghanaians.
Central to the reasons given for his resignation were allegations of unconstitutional and unmeritorious decisions of the National Council of the NPP regarding a petition by some presidential aspirants which demanded that the Super Delegates Conference should be held at a single venue and also allow each delegate to nominate five persons instead of one.
Mr Kyerematen asserted that the Super Delegates Conference was strategically and tactically skewed to favour one particular aspirant.
In response to that, Mr Kodua said: “Article 13(1) (1), of the party’s constitution states that the date and venue for the presidential primaries shall be decided by the National Council, provided, however, that the National Council may, on appropriate occasion, vary the date.”
He said without doubt, the National Council did not violate the constitution by voting against the proposal for the use of a single venue for the election.
To buttress that point, he recalled a precedent in 2014 when a Special Electoral College election was held at several venues but none of the aspirants at the time, including Mr Kyerematen, filed a petition regarding the venue.
Mr Kodua explained further that the party’s constitution further states in Article 13(2) (2) that, “where there is more than one contestant, each delegate will cast his or her vote by secret ballot for one of the contestants”.
He, therefore, said that the demand by the petitioners for delegates to vote for five persons instead of one was unconstitutional.
As democratic and transparent as the leadership of the party had been, the NPP General Secretary said it recommended for the consideration of the National Council a determination on the petition of the aspirants upon receipt of same.
He said even more important was the fact that the petitioners, although most of them were not members of the National Council, were granted a rare opportunity to appear before the council and make their case on why such a proposal should be adopted.
“In a true democratic process, 73 members of the National Council voted against both proposals relative to nine others who voted in support, underscoring the overwhelming rejection of both proposals,” he noted.
Mr Kodua also disagreed with assertions made by Mr Kyerematen that the party had been hijacked by a selected group of party leaders and elders, as well as government appointees.
Historically, he said, the selection of flag bearers for political parties in Ghana had been the preserve of a privileged few until the NPP took the bold decision to decentralise the process by expanding its electoral college to enfranchise some 106,590 delegates in 2010.
He said currently, about 200,000 delegates would be voting to select the party’s next flag bearer relative to the estimated 1,998 who did same in 1992.
“Clearly, the quantum leap to 200,000 delegates in 2023 underscores the decentralisation of power to all party stakeholders and defeats the assertion that the party has been hijacked by a privileged few,” he stressed.
Addressing the allegation of intimidation against Mr Kyerematen’s supporters, Mr Kodua stated that certain government appointees, including cabinet ministers who openly declared their support for him, were still at post and had never been intimidated.
He pointed out that under the Fourth Republic, both the NPP and the NDC had had some leading members breaking ranks to either form their own party or join other political parties, yet the mother party remained resilient.
“Going into the 2024 general election, the party has a message, and we use this opportunity to commend Mr Kyerematen for admitting the good work the government has done under his then ministry,” he said.
He further urged the party faithful who were hitherto supporting Mr Kyerematen by virtue of his membership in the party, to continue supporting the NPP in its quest to break the eight.
“Together, we shall overcome challenges, and together, we shall achieve success.
We urge all party faithful to remain committed, dedicated and resolute in the ongoing limited voter registration exercise.
Together, we shall persevere, and together, we shall succeed,” Mr Kodua affirmed.