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Politics

Mahama duty-bound to look into police brutality – Nana Addo

Presidential Candidate of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has backed calls for a commission of inquiry to be established into the circumstances that led to the use of excessive force by the police on demonstrators last Wednesday.

Tear gas and rubber bullets were fired at the demonstrators, who were on a march to present a petition to the Electoral Commission of Ghana over the current voters’ register.

The action of the police left several injured while some of the protesters were arrested.

Speaking on the first day of his ‘Rise and Build Tour’ in the Upper East Region, Nana Addo demanded, as a matter of urgency, a commission of inquiry at the instance of the president into the incident.

“I believe the President of the Republic is duty-bound to establish a commission of enquiry to go into the events of [Wednesday] into how come the Police behaved the way that they did, and make the appropriate recommendations,” he said.

He described as a shame the action resorted to by the police against the “unarmed” protesters.

“It is a great shame on our country, and it is a tragedy for Ghana. The democratic gains that our people have made, they are not going back. We are not going back on democracy. We are not going back to police rule in Ghana. We are not going back to one-man rule.”

The march was organised by anti-government pressure group Let My Vote Count in partnership with Alliance for Accountable Government (AFAG) and Movement for Change.

They were joined by some members of the NPP.

Nana Addo said the party will not relent in its call for a new voters’ register ahead of the 2016 elections.

“We are determined to continue down the path of democratic engagement and an open society where its citizens can go about their work peacefully. Brute force by the police against unarmed citizens exercising their constitutional rights, should be a thing of the past.”

According to him, the call for a new voters’ register “will strengthen the credibility of the electoral system and therefore make the outcome of any electoral outcome easy for people to accept.

“It is the best way of consolidating and guaranteeing the peace of our country and the survival of our democracy, not because it will favour the NPP, but because it will favour our democracy.”

By Emmanuel Kwame Amoh|3news.com|Ghana

Twitter: @kwame_amoh

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Politics

NPP: Let’s elevate politics beyond lies, deceit & insult

The General Secretary of the main opposition New Patriotic Party, Kwabena Agyepong has admonished the governing NDC and other political parties in the country to elevate politics beyond “insults and lies.”

According to Mr. Agyepong, the the two leading party’s have “had the opportunity to govern Ghana and the levels of discourse should be guided by decent mature” commentary. He, however, added that the contrary to the position above, discussions by politicians have been malicious, deceitful and detrimental to the growth of the countries democracy.

He was speaking at the congress grounds of the National Democratic Congress where he and other political parties gave their solidarity messages aimed at wishing the NDC a fruitful congress.

Kwabena Agyepong said “as politicians we have a duty to lead by example by being tolerant decent and have respect for one another” and should be elevated beyond propaganda, insults and lies. Politics is a serious business” he added.

On leadership, the NPP’s General Secretary said “Ghana now needs a Leadership that is courageous and decisive and there’s only one such leader and that’s Nana Akufo Addo of the NPP” a comment which was met with loud jeers and boos.

In conclusion, he called on all political party’s to “help secure a new voters register” from next year so we can have a free fair and credible election in 2016.

By Martin Asiedu-Dartey|3news.com|Ghana

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Politics

Communications Officer Nkansah to make NDC ‘seen, heard and felt’

Newly elected Communications Officer of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Solomon Nkansah has justified the re-christening of the erstwhile Propaganda Secretary position, saying the Constitution Amendment Committee led by Ken Dzirasah did not make a mistake at all.

He said the change is a response to the changing times within the party.

By popular acclamation during its 8th national delegates’ congress in Kumasi, the ruling party amended its constitution to have that Propaganda Secretary position on the executive body replaced.

“It is just to synchronize and reposition NDC to meet the aspiration of our admirers,” Mr Nkansah told TV3’s Martin Asiedu-Dartey on Midday Live on Monday, December 22.

He explained that he will fundamentally act as a publicity officer for the party.

“[The position] has to do with making sure that NDC is seen, heard and felt by many,” he said.

He dismissed fears that the position will conflict the role of the party’s Communications Director.

By Emmanuel Kwame Amoh|3news.com|Ghana

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Politics

Tunisia candidate refuses to concede

Moncef Marzouki has refused to admit defeat in Tunisia’s first free presidential election after exit polls suggested Beji Caid Essebsi had won.

The caretaker president, a former exile, said his rival’s declaration of victory was “undemocratic”.

Mr Essebsi, 88, has been celebrating with supporters, telling them all Tunisians now need to “work together”, and promising to bring stability.

Critics say his success marks the return of a discredited establishment.

Official results are not expected until Monday evening. One exit poll gave Mr Essebsi 55.5%, with several others showing similar figures.

The election marks the last stage of Tunisia’s move to democracy, after the 2011 overthrow of President Zine el-Abedine Ben Ali.

It is the first time Tunisians have been able vote freely for their president since independence from France in 1956.

‘Undemocratic’

Mr Marzouki, a 67-year-old human rights activist forced into exile by the Ben Ali government, said the election was too early to call.

“The announcement of victory is undemocratic and we should wait if we want to be a state that respects the rule of law,” he told supporters.

“What I want to tell you is that we are victorious, we are victorious , we are victorious. Tunisia has won and you have won. You have won for Tunisia, for democracy and for human rights.”

Mr Marzouki has been interim president since 2011 and is more popular in the conservative, poorer south.

He was thought likely to attract support from the moderate Islamist Ennahda party, which has played a key role in Tunisian politics since the Arab Spring but did not field a candidate.

Coastal candidate

Mr Essebsi appeared on television after polls closed on Sunday, saying: “I dedicate my victory to the martyrs of Tunisia.”

“I thank Marzouki, and now we should work together without excluding anyone,” he added.

Supporters danced and let off fireworks outside the headquarters of Mr Essebsi’s secular-leaning Nidaa Tounes party.

Mr Essebsi held office under both deposed President Zine el-Abedine Ben Ali and Tunisia’s first post-independence leader, Habib Bourguiba.

He led in the first round of voting last month with 39% of the vote. Mr Marzouki polled 33%.

He is popular in the wealthy, coastal regions, and based his appeal to voters on stability and experience.

Reduced role

Whoever wins faces restricted powers under a constitution passed earlier this year.

The president will be commander-in-chief of the armed forces but can appoint or sack senior officers only in consultation with the prime minister.

The president will also set foreign policy in consultation with the prime minister, represent the state and ratify treaties.

Tunisia boosted security for the elections and closed border posts with Libya, which has been plagued by unrest.

A group of at least three attackers targeted a polling station near the city of Kairouan on Sunday morning. Security forces say they killed one attacker and arrested three.

Source: BBC

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Politics

This is my worst NDC results – General Mosquito

General Secretary of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Johnson Asiedu Nketia has described his performance at the just-ended delegates’ congress as his worst given his previous performances.

Mr Asiedu Nketia, popularly known as General Mosquito, amassed 2,685 representing 81.59 per cent to beat his sole contender, Ishaq Abdallah Farakhan, at the congress. Farakhan polled a surprising 606 votes.

The General Secretary is the only executive member to have retained his position after the congress.

But the former NDC Member of Parliament said he had secured more votes in 2006 and 2010.

He explained to journalists how he amassed 82 per cent in his first shot at the post in 2006 and then to over 90 per cent in his second run.

This is actually my worst results, he said shortly before the official results were made public by the Electoral Commission on Sunday morning.

Mr Farakhan had promised to beat the incumbent by 60 per cent prior to the elections.

Dr Kwabena Adjei, who had come to power at the same time as Mr Asiedu Nketia, lost his position to one of his vice chairmen, Kofi Portuphy, while National Organiser yaw Boateng Gyan, said to be a close friend to Mr Asiedu Nketia, was also defeated by Kofi Adams, one of General Mosquito’s deputies.

By Emmanuel Kwame Amoh|3news.com|Ghana

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NDC has shown the way in kicking non-performing executives out – PPP

The youth wing of Ghana’s second largest opposition party, Progressive People’s Party (PPP), has lauded delegates of the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) for showing the way to go in 2016: “that is, getting rid of the current non-performing NDC government whose only achievement has been to bring the nation into economic turmoil.”

The PPP youth say it is a lesson every Ghanaian must learn from.

The NDC went to congress over the weekend to elect functional executives for the next four years. Though most of the newly elected were part of the old stock, the results got some of the old faces out.

The Chairman of the party, Dr Kwabena Adjei, for example, lost his position to one of his vice chairmen, Kofi Portuphy.

National Organiser Yaw Boateng Gyan also lost his position to a Deputy General Secretary, Kofi Adams.

In a statement signed by National Youth Coordinator Divine Nkrumah, the PPP drew the attention of all and sundry to the gesture of the NDC at the Baba Yara Sports Stadium.

“This clearly shows that the delegates and party members were not in the least pleased with the old crop of unproductive leaders who had no vision in terms of advancement of the party,” the statement said.

It added: “The delegates must therefore be applauded for setting the example that Ghanaians ought to follow in 2016…”

The PPP cited mismanagement of the economy of the country, corruption, lack of visionary leadership as some of the reasons why the NDC must not be retained in 2016.

“The youth of the Progressive People’s Party and Ghanaian youth yearn for a progressive and action-led government come 2016.”

By Emmanuel Kwame Amoh|3news.com|Ghana

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Nana Konadu says ‘No’ to NDC

Former First Lady Nana Konadu Agyemang-Rawlings has categorically stated that she is not returning to the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) despite a plea made by her husband and the party’s founder, Jerry John Rawlings, to delegates at the just-ended congress to get her back.

In an exclusive interview with TV3’s Nana Aba Anamoah on Monday, December 22, the former NDC Vice Chairperson said her love and convictions that went into establishing the ‘umbrella’ party have since waned.

“The conviction I had in going to some other place is still there and still relevant,” she stated.

Former President Rawlings urged NDC’s rank and file on Saturday when he mounted the podium to get “our mother” back .

“Let us invite our mother Nana Konadu to come back home,” he said. “I hope she can hear us, I hope she can see us.”

But Nana Konadu revealed to Nana Aba Anamoah that she was even not by her television nor radio set when the request was made by her husband.

“I had been busy the whole day. I had not heard,” she said, adding that Mr Rawlings “knows better” about her decision not to return though his appeal may have emanated from “a good heart”.

The Former First Lady was instrumental in the establishment of the NDC in 1992 but left in the run-up to the 2012 elections to found the National Democratic Party (NDP). She had been defeated by the late President Professor John Evans Atta Mills in an unprecedented presidential primary, which saw an incumbent president challenged within his party.

“I worked to build [NDC],” she pointed out.

“But even when you build a house, you build the house because you want to live in it…and you find that robbers have taken over your house and the house has been desecrated in some way and you have the chance to move to a smaller house somewhere, if you are not staying there, then that’s your problem,” she analogized.

Corruption in NDC?

Asked whether the NDC has been infested with corruption as asserted by Mr Rawlings at the weekend’s congress, Mrs Rawlings said she agrees with her husband.

“It is too much.”

She further insinuated that President John Dramani Mahama has lost the fight against corruption as he cannot set an example.

“Let’s live by examples.”

By Emmanuel Kwame Amoh|3news.com|Ghana

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NDC Leader Mahama congratulates Portuphy; commends Huudu Yahaya for maturity

President John Dramani Mahama has congratulated all the newly-elected executive officers of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), following the conclusion of the 8th National Delegates’ Congress in Kumasi, in the early hours of Sunday.

“I have called our new party Chairman, Mr. Kofi Portuphy, and congratulated him on winning a fair and democratic fight,” stated President Mahama, who is the leader and flagbearer of the party. 

“I have also conveyed, through him, my congratulations and very best wishes to all the other members – both retained and newly-elected – who will now form a new solid leadership to provide an even more effective organisation for our great party, so that all Ghanaians can benefit from the skills, commitment and expertise we have to offer.”

The President has equally extended his immense gratitude to all the outgoing national executives of the NDC. 

“Dr. Kwabena Adjei, Yaw Gyan and others who have been replaced are committed social democrats and lifelong NDC stalwarts, and we must thank them very much for all the sacrifices and contributions they have made for the sake of the party and for Ghana,” President Mahama stated. 

He added that these experienced party colleagues will still be needed to share their knowledge and advice to assist the new executives and the party in moving the Government’s agenda forward.

“We have a lot to do for Ghana, and a lot to offer Ghanaians now and in the years to come. Only the best will do and we will strive to offer the best.”

The President commended Alhaji Hudu Yahaya for the great maturity he displayed in standing down from the Chairmanship contest in the larger interest of the party. 

President Mahama also extended his congratulations to all members of the National Democratic Congress – at home and abroad – on the successful delegates’ conference that has concluded peacefully, smoothly and successfully in the Ashanti Regional capital. 

He urged all members of the party to rally together quickly behind the new executives, in a renewed spirit of unity, dedication and commitment, so that the party can become stronger, better, and more effective in delivering excellent governance and prosperity to the people of Ghana, based on integrity, vision and patriotism.

Source: FHCB

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Politics

Portuphy, Adams in, incumbents Kwabena Adjei & Boateng Gyan booted out

In what appears to be a revolution in the executive ranks of he National Democratic Congress, two incumbents, Kwabena Adjei (National Chairman) and Yaw Boateng Gyan (National Organiser) have both been kicked out of office.

Their replacements, Kofi Portuphy and Kofi Adams respectively both won with huge margins at the 8th delegates congress of the party which took place at the Baba Yara sports stadium in Kumasi over the weekend.

Winners for the Vice Chair positions include Betty Mould Iddrissu, Samuel Ofosu Ampofo, Alhaji Said Sinare, Harry Zakour, Anita Desouso and Lee Ocran taking the six available slots.

The General Secretary position was retained by Johnson Asiedu Nketia (General Mosquito) who would be deputized by one time presidential spokesperson at Ghana’s presidency, Koku Anyidoho and George Lawson.

Deputy National Organiser slots were taken by Amidu Akamba and Madi Gibril.

By: Martin Asiedu-Dartey|3news.com|Ghana

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New NDC chair: “You don’t need lamps to look for us”

Newly elected National Chairman of the governing National Democratic Congress, Dr. Kofi Portuphy has assured party delegates and grassroots members that he and his executives would be very available and accessible to them always.

In his acceptance speech on behalf of the 23 executives who were sworn in on Sunday December 21 at the Baba Yara Stadium in Kumasi, Dr. Portuphy said “We’d be available day and night, rain or shine and whatever the weather, you don’t need lamps to look for us.”
 
He further indicated that his major goal and that of the new leadership is to “unite the party and grassroots members and that 2016 is our goal. Today is victory for the NDC and together we will deliver with your support.”
 
Mr. Portuphy polled 2,457 representing 74.89% of total votes cast to snatch the slot from the incumbent Dr. Kwabena Adjei who managed just 316 votes representing 9.63% for place third. The second place went to Dan Abodakpui who got 508 votes representing 15.48%.
 
Another shocker for the night was the landslide victory for Kofi Adams who got 2,543 votes representing 77.60% beating the incumbent Yaw Boateng Gyan who got 734 votes representing 22.40%.
 
By Martin Asiedu-Dartey|3news.com|Ghana