Delegates of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) have been cautioned not to change the Presidential and Parliamentary tickets that the party fielded for the 2016 elections.
“As the adage goes, you don’t change a winning team; you don’t fix it when it is not broken. We call on the delegates of our great party to maintain the winning team that we used for the 2016 elections, our hardworking MP, Daniel Nii Kwartei Titus-Glover, has achieved a lot for Tema East and he is popular on the ground with he and Nana Addo’s bill-boards, banners and T-shirts all over the place. How do you change such a mature and experienced MP?” Mr. Daniel Kwame Annang, a grassroot member of Tema East NPP said.
Speaking at news conference, in Accra to pledge their support to their candidate, the members said the 2016 tickets were massive winning ones that would give the NPP an easy victory again in December 2020.
Mr Annang popularly called ‘Atoogah’ also called on the national leadership of the NPP to do everything possible to ensure that their winning team was presented for December 2020 polls.
The news conference was organized amidst complaints from many disqualified Parliamentary candidates who had accused the national leadership of the party of favouring sitting MPs over unknown underdogs.
However, according to Atoogah, the disqualifications had not even been far reaching enough.
Flanked by Mary Ayimo, another grassroot person, he said it was a necessary sifting process that the party needed to ensure the collective good.
“Look, why have we retained President Akufo-Addo as our unopposed Presidential Candidate for 2020? Why is it that those people who want to run as MPs have not been ambitious enough to go and contest the President for the Flagbearership? It is because they know the President is our most winnable candidate. So the question is, why are they trying to replace the President’s MPs, the same MPs that he won the 2016 elections with?” Atoogah asked.
He explained that it was necessary to maintain the 2016 winning team because all the team members (sitting MPs) had already been well marketed. “You just have to look around town and you will see that President Akufo-Addo’s posters from 2016 bear the image of himself and the MPs that he contested with in 2016.”
Atoogah pointed out that if the NPP elected new faces, the party would have to market them from scratch, “and already, the 2020 elections were less than six months away.”
He said that in many of the Constituencies, some of the people trying to unseat sitting MPs were simply not marketable.
He therefore urged the delegates to vote massively against all unknown candidates who were contesting against sitting MPs.
Atoogah also congratulated the leadership of the party in Constituencies such as Assin Central, where party bankroller, Kennedy Agyapong, was a longstanding MP, and Suame, where Majority Leader, Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, is MP, for setting up the sitting MPs to go unopposed.
Meanwhile, the NPP grassroots members have proclaimed victory ahead of the 2020 elections, saying former President Mahama’s announcement that the opposition NDC will not accept a flawed 2020 election results means the opposition was preparing the grounds to give up. “I doff-off my hat for Ledzokuku and Ayawaso central constituencies for allowing Dr. Bernard Oko Boye and Mr Henry Quartey papa-fio to also go unopposed because of their hard work” Atoogah said.
Mary Ayimo, who shared the high table with Atoogah at the news conference said the former President’s statement which also implied that the Supreme Court would set the stage for a flawed election if it rules in favour of the EC’s decision to compile a new register, means that the opposition party was chickening out of the election.
“We are sure our Law Lords at the Supreme Court will rule in favour of the EC, so what this means for the NDC and Mahama is that, they are going to step out of the race.”
Ms Ayimo also welcomed the rallying call of the NDC’s National Chairman on its members not to participate in the upcoming compilation of the new voters’ register by the Electoral Commission, saying this will mean an even easier victory for the NPP.