A team of researchers led by Dr Amoako Tuffuor has advised the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) against imposing Parliamentary aspirant on its electorates.

According to the team, although the coronavirus pandemic and ban on social distancing threaten the scheduled primaries of the party, NEC choosing the candidates for the various constituency instead of through an election, will not only be dangerous but uncalled for.

Listing reasons why the NPP cannot afford to impose candidates on the people in the run-up to the December elections, the researchers said, “If the Electoral Commission (EC) can put in place protocols to ensure a whole national election, why can’t NPP think out relevant protocols to have a smooth parliamentary election?”

The General Secretary of the NPP, John Boadu is alleged to have said, “assuming this (Covid-19) gets worse so that it is impossible for us to have primaries at all and the EC insists they can put in place social distancing protocols to make it possible for us to vote on December 7 and we cannot hold primaries due to the ban on public gathering, the National Executive Committee can take a decision as to who becomes a candidate.”

The suggestion by NEC did not go down well with some party supporters who argued that the exercise will be used to favour some party favourites.

Also, they argue that having gone through the application, vetting and other processes including balloting, it will be unfair for the voting process to be cancelled when other measures including ensuring proper social distancing can allow the process to take place.

Backing these claims, the researchers also cited the recently held election in South Korea which witness a 66% turnout amid the coronavirus pandemic as an example that can be followed.

“We can apply tents in open spaces etc from which Ghanaians including the EC can learn lessons by the leading democratic party in Ghana.

This is a very simple matter and we should not foment trouble by simply doing anything that may look like a package to favour some favourites – the people will not accept that,” the statement read.