A leading member of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), on Wednesday cautioned delegates and aspirants who would be attending the party’s national delegates’ congress on January 15 to 17, to avoid electoral manipulations.
Dr Austin Asamoa-Tutu, aspiring NDC National Chairman told newsmen in that: “NDC stands at the crossroads – to move backward into the political disintegration, which caused us victory in Election 2004 again or set a democratic standard of coming out of the congress more united with both winners and losers jubilating together.
“Posterity has ordained the delegates to the congress to have their names written with golden ink as making a wise political decision to ensure victory in Election 2012 and eventually giving mother Ghana a capable and competent leaders for a better Ghana”.
Dr Asamoa-Tutu urged the delegates to critically examine the campaign messages and other wooing antics of the aspirants and decide who to entrust the fortune of the party.
He pledged to build the party through investing in Information and Communication Technology, linking all constituencies to their regional offices and linking the regional offices to the national offices for effective communication.
Dr Asamoa-Tutu said: “We need to build a party and democratic system of administration under which all members will be able to contribute to the welfare, peace and prosperity of our great party and keep it from dictatorship and oppression”.
I will harness to the full the human and financial resources of the party and ensure development of all from the ward levels through regional and national without discrimination”.
Dr Asamoa-Tutu pledged to render selfless, honest, committed and dedicated service to the party when given the mandate.
He cautioned against excessive monetary influence in the campaign, stressing “we must avoid fueling the public perception that a few anonymous people with money, irrespective of how it is acquired, can buy positions in elections”.
Dr Asamoa-Tutu reiterated his proposal for setting up a special party development tariff to be paid by the Presidency, Ministers of State and Parliamentarians to strengthen the party machinery for Election 2012.
He said funds mobilisation, strengthening of the party structures, and empowerment of all party functionaries and organs from the ward levels through the constituencies to national must be pursued with all urgency.
Dr Asamoa-Tutu said “there would be National Development Fund and Regional Development Fund – contributions from the Presidency; Ministers of State, their Deputies and Ambassadors would be channeled into the national fund.
“While contributions from Political Office holders; NDC MPs; DCEs; MCEs and Government Appointees would be channeled directly into the regional fund. The region would retain 30 per cent and disburse the remaining 70 per cent among the constituencies within the region,” he said.
Dr Asamoa-Tutu reminded all functionaries that whatever governmental position they occupied; “you are there on the strength of the party; therefore as you climb up, the structures must be supported to build a solid operational system”.
He therefore called on the delegates to vote for him massively to oil the party machinery, “under my leadership, all the regional offices would be link directly to the national office while at the regional level all constituencies would be linked together.
“Such a link-up would ensure that we utilise resources and marshal our foot solders across the nation for campaign and party education”.
Dr Asamoa-Tutu described himself as a compromise candidate capable of eliminating intra and inter party antagonism, a disposition essential to attract floating voters.
“I stand out among the lot as the most affable, politically mature, with an unblemished reputation both in private and in public life, international exposure and highly connected, high diplomatic negotiation skills and ability to work with every Ghanaian irrespective of one’s political background.”
He said NDC must reduce intra party antagonism, bickering and any negative tendencies that had the potential of derailing the party’s quest to retain power by electing a National Chairman with the ability to calm the anxieties of losing candidates and their supporters.
Dr Asamoa-Tutu reminded aspirants that the nation’s electoral laws frown on monetary influence in elections; “as candidate commits the offence of bribery if he or she gives or receives, or causes to be given or received, money, a gift, a loan or something of value as a means of inducing a voter to vote or not to vote in a certain way.
He said “as a party in government we must avoid exhibiting opulence in the conduct of our internal elections as such behaviours have the potential of denting our image for Election 2012”.
Dr Asamoa-Tutu on the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the party to live up to its mandate through the enforcement of all the electoral laws to uphold the sanctity of NDC elections especially as the party set the structures for the crucial Election 2012.
He called on the delegates to look beyond monetary considerations when deciding who should occupy executive positions in the party, “our focus should be capable men and women of integrity and acumen to lead is to another electoral victory”.
“The 2010 Congress must provide NDC with an effective capable leaders with the ability to marshal the party to win Election 2012, not those with money to spread around,” he said.