Wednesday, December 17, 2008

PNC parliamentary caucus endorses NPP candidate for run-off polls

The People's National Convention (PNC) parliamentary caucus on Wednesday endorsed the presidential candidate of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Nana Akufo-Addo for the December 28 run-off polls, contravening the party's decision to remain neutral in the second round of voting.
     The PNC's National Executive Committee on Tuesday decided to remain neutral after a chaotic meeting to consider proposals presented by the contestants hit a snag.
     But the parliamentary caucus, headed by Moses Dani-Baah, MP for Sissala East, said because the party could not craft a common position on the issue and thus decided to go neutral, "this means we can individually declare our position on whom to throw our weight behind".
     The other members of the caucus include Bayiriga Haruna, MP for Sissala West and David Appasera, MP for Bolgatanga.
     They said even though all the opposition parties called for change during campaigning, including the PNC that campaigned for "real change", the PNC was not in agreement that the change they all identified with to be in Ghana's best interest would be "delivered" by the National Democratic Congress (NDC).
     "We have studied the visions of the two men contesting the presidency, compared the performance records of both governments, and looked at the historical relationship between the two parties and ours…. And we simply have not been convinced that the NDC offers the kind of change that will fast forward Ghana's development."
     They said their decision to support the NPP was informed by the commitment of Nana Akufo-Addo to take "bold decisive steps to close the development gap between the north and south of Ghana".
     "This was the dream of our pre-colonial leaders, which began in 1953. Yet, no government had been able to articulate such a clear, exceptional programme for the development of the north as Nana Akufo-Addo has done and which he will put into action if elected President," they said.
      They noted that the one billion-dollar Northern Development Fund that would be managed by the Northern Development Authority, which Akufo-Addo had promised to set up within the first six months of his government, was welcome news for the people of the north.
     "We are ready for that vision … and we will do our utmost to help him make this vision reality.
     "The first step that is within our hands today is to elect Nana Akufo-Addo as President, God wiling…. The PNC will then devote itself to providing the critical objective support to ensure that he delivers on this promise and overcomes any hurdles in the way."
     The caucus said the party was impressed with the NPP presidential candidate's "discipline to maintain an issues-based campaign, in spite of all provocations that have been thrown his way.
    "We believe he has shown strong moral character and mature political leadership.
    "We are ready to offer him all the critical and objective support that he will need to push forward his bold vision to bring back the can-do spirit of the Ghanaian and finally see us make a serious attempt to moving from our third world status to first world status.
    "That dream of Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah, that dream of Dr Hilla Limann, can be realized within a generation with the right leadership driving and supporting the talent and abilities of the Ghanaian people."
    Party executives could not be reached on their take on the new development.

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