12 December 2012

Ghana: Nana - It's Not About Me - It's About Survival of Our Democracy

Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo says the opposition New Patriotic Party will not to accept the result of the presidential election until the Supreme Court had pronounced on the party's dispute with the Electoral Commission.

"It is not about me. It is not even about the New Patriotic Party nor its followers. It is about safeguarding our democracy and making it grow. We cannot allow a government in power to use illegal means to perpetuate its stay, when the people have not given it the mandate," Nana Akufo-Addo told The Chronicle, after emerging from the marathon meeting of the party's executive at the Alisa Hotel in Accra, yesterday.

The NPP presidential candidate said after studying the results of 28 constituencies, it had emerged that President John Dramani Mahama was credited with 82,000 votes he did not gain at the polls. "Mine reduced by 36,000 in the same constituencies. Evidence is emerging that there is more," the man who was the closest challenger to the President at the polls said.

"We are going to court, because the court is the final arbiter in a dispute like this in a democracy. Even in only 28 constituencies, evidence is clear that President Mahama did not win in the first round, as they are touting. Even at this early stage, there is a strong case for a run-off."

He appealed to the teeming supporters of the NPP to remain calm while the leadership dealt with the dispute. "Our supporters have a right to express their feelings. In a democracy, people have a right to be heard. But that should be within the law. We do not want a situation where the expression of people's feelings puts the nation in jeopardy."

He assured the rank and file of the NPP membership, and all Ghanaians, that the party leadership was doing everything possible to ensure that their vote was properly accounted for.

The meeting at the Alisa Hotel brought a number of old folks of the party who have not been seen in public for a long while. Mr. Joseph Henry Mensah, former Senior Minister, was present. Also there was former party chairman Haruna Esseku, looking ill and infirm, and had to be helped in and out of the auditorium at the Alisa Hotel.

Former President John Agyekum Kufuor was on the high table, while former Chief of Staff Kwadwo Mpiani was also present.

Reacting to the NPP's threat of going to court, Deputy Information Minister Samuel Okudzeto-Ablakwa said the NPP had the right to go to court, but the government would not negate its responsibility of ensuring that law and order was maintained.

He said the President, as Commander-In-Chief of the Ghana Armed Forces, would not negate his duty of ensuring that this nation was at peace.

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