Saturday, 11 July

Defeated NPP aspirant petitions party for primary re-run

Mr Benjamin Arthur has called for a re-run

A contestant and national patron of the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) in the Asante Mampong constituency, Mr Benjamin Arthur, has said the photo album/register that was used in the conduct of the just-ended primaries was “in violation of Articles 34 and 39(f) of the Rules and Regulations” of the party’s constitution and has, therefore, called for a re-run.

According to him, there were removals and replacements of certain delegates in the party’s register.

The NPP, on Saturday, 20 June 2020, organised its primaries in the various constituencies where it has sitting Members of Parliament across the country which saw over 40 incumbent MPs lose their positions to new entrants while others retained their positions to represent the party in the 2020 polls.

In a letter addressed to the General Secretary of the party, Mr John Boadu, the contestant and national patron noted he was writing in line with “Article 8 of the Constitution of the New Patriotic Party and in accordance with section 15 of the ‘Guidelines and Modalities for the Parliamentary Primaries’ to protest the results and to ask for the re-run of the primaries” due to reasons including “the Photo Album/Register used in the conduct of the primaries was in violation of Articles 34 and 39(f) of the Rules and Regulations. I had petitioned on this matter at various levels when it first came to light of the removal and replacement of certain delegates in the register.”

According to the contestant, “Hon. Addai Nimo (an aspirant) also petitioned on the same matter but was never attended to. Some affected polling station executives who were removed from the album also petitioned but were never heard (see copies of previous petitions). As of the voting day, two of the aspirants (myself and Hon. Addai Nimo) did not know who the council of elders and patrons were. Persistent requests for the original album and the list of the council of elders and patron fell on deaf ears.

“On Monday 8th of June 2020, I and Hon. Addai Nimo came to the Headquarters to meet the General Secretary. Unfortunately, he was not around so we met the National 1st Vice. She made arrangements for us to meet the General Secretary on Saturday 13th June 2020 to resolve the matter. On the said date I met the General Secretary and Ashanti Regional Chairman at about 3:30 pm at the residence of the Regional Chairman. During deliberations, the General Secretary instructed the Regional Chairman to ensure that all the aspirants, the election committee chairman and constituency chairman and secretary met to effect the necessary corrections before the elections. The Regional Chairman assured us of the necessary steps to take but failed to do so.”

The contestant and national patron also stated that: “On Tuesday 16th June 2020, the MCE called a meeting involving the Municipal Security Council Members all aspirants, the NPP Constituency Election Committee Members and the Municipal Electoral Commission Officer (M/ECO). During such meeting, concerns on the album and the biasedness of four (4) members of the Elections Committee were again raised by me and Hon. Addai Nimo. There was the assurance that the right album will be used and that we should wait for the album being brought from National (John Boadu) for exhibition and comments.

“On Thursday, 18th June 2020, upon seeing that the wrong album will be coming from the Ashanti Regional Secretariat, I instructed my Lawyers to serve notice to the Regional Secretary, Constituency Secretariat and Elections Committee and the M/ECO warning that if the elections were held with those unqualified names included in the album I would reject the results and have the right to go to court (See Attachment)”

The letter continued that: “Surprisingly, on the day of voting, the same Regional Secretary who had deliberately ignored various calls to sanitise the register and to replace the biased election committee members was found moving up and down in the constituency giving orders for those challenged to vote. But for the timely restraint of my supporters, there would have been bloodshed in areas where unqualified voters were allowed to vote.

It further continued that: “The involvement of the unqualified voters significantly affected the results of the primaries” and “Several calls and petitions to replace the 4 biased Committee members were also ignored.”

Also, “In the morning of the voting day, the EC officials, in connivance with the incumbent prevented most of my agents from getting close to the inner perimeter of the voting premises despite agreeing to all the various protocols on the agent’s accreditation. Within the first 1 and half hours of voting, the incumbent intimidated most of the voters present compelling them to take photos/videos of how they voted (videos available). This intimidated lots of the voters contrary to the guidelines for the elections.

“Even after the voting, the incumbent and his team had gone for the ballot papers from the EC, made copies and are roaming asking those who voted for me and Hon. Addai Nimo to return all the monies he paid to them. This has been possible because the EC officials wrote the serial numbers and the initials of voters at the back of the ballot papers.”

The letter added that: “I was also an aspirant in the June 15, 2015 primaries in Mampong, lost but conceded defeat and supported the winner.

“Wherefore, I pray for the annulment and re-run of the primaries due to the injustice, unfair treatment meted out to me and the blatant violation of the rules and regulations meant for running the primaries.”


Source: Adiku