Some 10 out of the 18 Area Coordinators of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) in the Akim Oda Constituency of the Eastern Region who have been indefinitely suspended by Regional Executives have petitioned the hierarchy in Accra for intervention.
Speaking on behalf of the affected persons at a news conference on Friday, April 17, 2020, Coordinator for Nsenaa Electoral Area, Frank Nkansah appealed to the NPP National Chairman, Freddy Blay and General Secretary, John Boadu “and all appropriate party organs that matter, to reverse the decision” which he described as unconstitutional and against their fundamental human rights.
The Coordinators were suspended over a petition they filed against the Constituency Chairman, Alhaji Awudu Issaka, accusing him of openly campaigning for incumbent MP, William Agyapong Quaitoo, on 23rd February, 2020.
The petition sought to address the conduct of the constituency chairman, who is a member of the Constituency Parliamentary Elections Committee and as such, was supposed to remain neutral.
Frank Nkansah, coordinator for Nseena Electoral Area who is the lead petitioner alleged in the petition that the Chairman whilst addressing a section of party delegates sought to imply that President Akufo-Addo had ordered constituency Chairmen in the Region to make sure all incumbent MPs were retained.
He told the media that some polling station delegates aggrieved about the development, have threatened on several occasions to demonstrate against the party “but we the 10 coordinators are in constant talks with them to exercise restrains but we do not know for how long they can hold on to their threats.”
Read the statement below:
PRESS CONFERENCE ON THE SUSPENSION OF 10 ELECTORAL AREA COORDINATORS IN THE AKIM ODA CONSTITUENCY IN THE EASTERN REGION OF GHANA HELD ON FRIDAY 17TH APRIL, 2020.
Ladies and Gentlemen of the Media, you are warmly welcomed to this Press Conference.
In pursuant to article 4 subsection 3b of the New Patriotic Party Constitution which states that “A complaint against a member, or a Constituency Executive officer, other than a member of Parliament, Shall be in writing to the Regional Executive Committee”, a petition was written by 10 Electoral Area Coordinators on 23rd February, 2020 to the Regional Secretariat for redress. The petition sought to address the conduct of the constituency Chairman Alhaji Awudu Issaka who is a member of the Constituency Parliamentary Elections Committee and as such supposed to remain neutral was openly seen campaigning in favor of the incumbent Member of Parliament. We have an audio evidence of the Constituency Chairman openly addressing a section of party delegates where he even implicated the President His Excellency Nana Addo-Danquah Akkufo Addo telling all Eastern Regional Chairmen to make sure all incumbent Members of Parliament are retained. We believe our President never said that because he believes in the rule of law and the constitution of our party.
Surprisingly, our petition was not addressed but rather on the 22nd March, 2020, we received a letter from the Regional Chairman Mr. Kinston Kissi, directing the Constituency Chairman to suspend us from all Party related activities in the constituency until further notice which he obliged. In the same letter, the Constituency Chairman was instructed by the Regional Chairman to refer the matter to the Constituency Disciplinary Committee for ratification and/or further action/punishment after having taken a definite position in the matter. This conduct of the regional Chairman is in strict breach of article 4 subsection 3(6&7a) of our party’s Constitution which states that “A member, who breaches any provision in this Constitution, or whose activities undermine the Party’s Constitution, shall have a complaint lodge against him/her”, A complaint against a member or office holder at the polling station level or non-elected constituency officer shall be filled at the Constituency Office”.
Upon receiving the suspension letter on 22nd March, 2020, an appeal was filed at the National Secretariat on 24th March, 2020 for redress in pursuant to article 4 subsection 6(3) which states “ A member aggrieved by or dissatisfied with a decision of the Regional Executive Committee may, within fourteen (14) days of the receipt of the notice of the decision of the Regional executive Committee, appeal against the decision to the National Disciplinary Committee by filling an appeal in writing with the General Secretary”. Copies of our appeal were given to the National chairman, the Eastern Regional Council of Elders, the Chairman of the National Parliamentary Vetting Committee and the Akim Oda Constituency Council of Elders but our appeal has not been given the needed attention as we speak.
However, after 26 days upon receiving the suspension letter, the Constituency Disciplinary Committee has vehemently refused to call us for a fair hearing. This is in strict breach of article 4 subsection 5 (3) and article 3 subsection 3(2) which states “A disciplinary Committee shall, within twenty-one (21) days of receipt of the complaint, conclude its deliberations on the matter, and make its recommendations thereon to the Executive Committee”, “A member shall have the right to be heard whenever his or her activities and conduct are in question and under consideration of the party” respectively.
Flowing from the above, we wish to state the following:
We are therefore humbly appealing to the National Chairman Mr. Freddie Blay, the General secretary Mr. John Boadu and all appropriate party organs that matters to reverse the decision which is unconstitutional and against the fundamental human right.