Member of Parliament for Wa Central and Minister of State at the Presidency in charge of Public-Private Partnership Alhaji Abdul Rashid Hassan Pelpuo says since Ghana’s return to constitutional rule in 1992, the New Patriotic Party (NPP) have brought trouble any time they lost elections.
Explaining his assertion on TV3’s weekend news analysis programme Headlines on Saturday, February 23, 2013, Alhaji Pelpuo said in 1992 when the NPP lost the presidential elections, they, in protest, boycotted the subsequent parliamentary elections.
He also cited that when they lost the 1996 elections, the NPP wrote the ‘Stolen Verdict’ while they nearly held the country to ransom in 2008 when the National Democratic Congress (NDC) led then by late Professor John Evans Atta Mills won the elections. He noted that during that period they wanted to draw in some Supreme Court judges to file an injunction on declaration of results.
He said what the NPP MPs are doing now – boycotting some key parliamentary duties like vetting of ministerial nominees – is, therefore, not surprising. It is as a result of their party’s challenge in court of Election 2012 results.
He, however, stated that it only dents Ghana’s credibility as an oasis of peace in the sub-region.
“I think we have to examine ourselves that in 50 (plus) years whether the praise we are given is actually reflective,” he told host Kenneth Osei Ampofo.
He said the NPP is needed to run proceedings in Parliament.
“It is important that there must be an opposition,” he said.
The former Minister of Youth and Sports said what happened years back that is often cited by the NPP was “to save the rest of the country.”
“We were aggrieved but attended Parliament,” he added.
Alhaji Pelpuo said during Kufuor’s regime, a minister of state was arrested, tried and imprisoned.
However, he strongly rejected boycotts as a way of drumming home any grievances by any political bloc.
“We used it. I am not going to recommend it. They [NPP] used it. They don’t have to recommend it to themselves.
“When you boycott, it is the people who suffer,” he shared.
The former Deputy Majority Leader of Parliament said though the NDC was not happy with the outcome of the 2004 elections, they never called the president names like the NPP is doing now.
This was, however, sharply discounted by MP for Akuapem South Constituency Osei Bonsu Amoah, who joined the programme on phone.
According to the former Deputy Youth and Sports Minister, Founder of the NDC Flt. Lt. (Rtd) Jerry John Rawlings referred to President [John Agyekum] Kufuor as Ataa Ayi, a hardened criminal who was on the wanted list of the Ghana Police.
Mr Amoah pointed out that “people should give NPP credit for the way we are going about this crisis.”
He further said: “If we choose to show evidence to people there will be disaster.”
“What the EC has done is very serious,” he bemoaned.