The National Democratic Congress (NDC) Member of Parliament (MP) for Jirapa constituency, Dr Francis Bawaana Dakura, has made a passionate appeal to the leadership of the party to embrace dialogue and come together on a round-table to do retrospection in the 2016 election defeat as well as resolve the current internal challenges rocking the party.
According to the Legislator, this is the time for the NDC leaders to do soul searching, address the weaknesses and re-claim its founding principles if it is to be unbeatable in future elections.
He maintained that, if the NDC leaders, members and stakeholders don’t do some careful introspection and openly show remorse for the betrayal of the people’s trust it might not recover in time for the next general elections.
Party Internal Disunity
He told the paper that there are unresolved grievances among members and the party need to work on them to reduce unnecessary battles and factions that could cause serious damage to the fortunes of the party ahead of the 2020 general elections.
“Frankly speaking, we need to do retrospection and solve some of the unnecessary things that led us to this level. It is good that we set up the Professor Kwesi Botchwey Committee, but I must say that beside that committee, we need to also solve the internal problems.
“Some people within our ranks and files are at loggerheads and don’t talk to each other from the branch, constituency, regional and national level. We should not continue to pretend that there are no problems in our party, there are and are several of them that contributed to our defeat, “he opined.
While admitting that in every grouping there are bound to be agreements and disagreements, Dr Dakura believed, there is much to be done to solve some of the disunity and infighting within, adding, ” we should not in any way be seen at this point to be divided in the party. We must remember that a house divided against it can never stand.”
“Any attempt to allow divisions and factions will certainly spell doom for the NDC, which ordinarily should be the voice of the people now and the alternative platform for them come 2020, especially as the current administration of New Patriotic Party, NPP is clearly disappointing the citizens in the manner and way they are carrying on with governance,” he added.
He appealed passionately to the leadership of NDC on one hand and the elders on the other hand to sheathe all difference and resort to dialogue, which for him, is the best option for an amicable resolution of the internal contending issues.
For him, “reorganisation of the party, refocusing on the core values and principles of the party and staying united is the only way we can be truly formidable and the social actors and agents of the party,” the Jirapa Legislator averred.
He added that, the leading social agents of the party should take cue from the fall of the Convention People Party (CPP) and the rebuild of United Party (UP) to NPP and must not be seen to be on bad terms for whatever reasons, stating “We must put our house in order and forge ahead harmoniously.”
Abandoned of Party Social Ideals
Dr Dakura, argued that the party was voted out at the 2016 election because, some of the policies that the NDC government implemented were too anti-social contrary to the principles that the party rides its believe on, asserting that, “the party’s principles, ideologies, philosophies were gradually dying out.”
He explained that it is the NDC’s principles that set the party far apart from the NPP and without it, the party’s political chances could be threatened, nothing that, the leadership down played the Founder , Jerry John Rawlings suggestion that the NDC “cannot afford to fight the NPP on their own terms”
The Jirapa MP who spoke passionately on the party issues told said some of the current leadership as well as the then NDC government appointees had made the party to lose focus and direction, deviating from the principle of probity and accountability, as a result of some selfish behaviour, which he observed were all “anti-social democratic behaviour.”
He added that, the NDC government also did not pay heed to the feeling of the ordinary Ghanaian, especially issues on light bills, school fees, the unemployed youth and several taxes, which in his view were unnecessary.
Dr Dakura pointed that as if to add salt to injury the former Finance Minister Seth Terkpe, also did not help matters as most of the policies he spearheaded were more technocrats than politician.
Weak Youth Front
Explaining why the party lost massive support at the grassroots level and at the tertiary institutions, Dr Dakura said the party youth leadership under the leadership of Ludwig Hlodze and Siidi Abubakar Musa, witnessed the weakest youth front ever since the formation of NDC in 1992.
He noted that, there is apparent lack of confidence of young members of the party to propagate the values of the socialists’ ideals of the party which formed the foundation of the party.
According to him, the current leadership of the youth front of the party is very weak and it is about time they wake up and reorganise to restore.
The Jirapa Legislator recounted the moral and economics decay that led to the revolution and called on the NDC youth not to shy away from the party’s history which is essentially embodied in Flt Lt Jerry John Rawlings.
Nevertheless, he said the youth front have a duty to uphold the ideals of probity, accountability, integrity, freedom and justice at all times and by so doing, they must eschew public vilification of each other and “engage in the things that unite us than those that divide us” to ensure the unity and victory of the NDC in future elections.
The Way Forward
Asked what will be the way forward for 2020,? Dr Dakura said, If NDC members, stakeholders and current leadership will reconcile their differences, ensure change of strategy, the party will take over power democratically come December, 2020, stating, “it is not impossible for NDC to return in 2020 but we need to work hard.”
“I have confidence in the inter-party election review committee under the chairmanship of Professor Kwesi Botchwey and I am so optimistic that the committee’s recommendations will bring out some useful reorganisation strategy. But I will further call for a roundtable conference between the party leaders, MPs , former Ministers and all appointees to end the current crisis in NDC” he said.
He added that if every party leaders and MPs play their respective role and use the resources available judiciously, the party have the chance of returning to power, stating that, “NDC remains the fairest and most Democratic Party that ever ruled Ghana.”
The Jirapa MP also asked the leadership of the party to treat the former president and founder of the party, Jerry John Rawlings with cautions as his words when burst out affect the party either in positive or negative.
He added that, “it is ironical for members of the party who said the Founder is irrelevant in the party turned round to blame him for the defeat at the 2016 elections.