19 December 2012

Ghana: NPP Plan to Boycott John Parliamentary Caucus Many Miss Presidential Inauguration

Newly-elected parliamentarians of the New Patriotic Party stock are in a dilemma. With the party leadership insisting on not conceding defeat to the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) until the Supreme Court had adjudicated on the party's charge of a 'Stolen Verdict,' after the flawed elections of 2012, NPP parliamentarians are considering whether or not to be part of the swearing-in process of President John Dramani Mahama, the very person the party claims to have benefitted from the elections stolen from them.

Yesterday, when Parliament resumed after its long break for the elections, Members of Parliament, owing allegiance to the Elephant family, held a series of meetings on the issue. The Chronicle can report authoritatively that the series of meetings failed to resolve the issue. There appears to be a general consensus among aggrieved members for the NPP MPs to boycott the inauguration of President-elect, John Dramani Mahama.

The Chronicle learnt that the party in Parliament would continue to hold both formal and informal meetings on the issue, until a consensus was reached in time for the presidential inauguration on Wednesday, January 7.

A source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told The Chronicle that there was a strong lobby within the MPs' ranks for the members to boycott the presidential inauguration, as a means of sending a powerful message out there, that the party in Parliament meant business.

Several attempts to reach Minority Leader Osei Kyei Mensah-Bonsu proved futile. The Chronicle learnt that he was locked up in a series of meetings with his colleagues on the next line of action. At the weekend Mr. Mensah Bonsu alleged in Kumasi that compromised electoral officers added as many as 150,000 non-existent votes to the number registered by President John Dramani Mahama in the presidential elections.

The Minority Leader told party faithful after a morning keep-fit exercise in Kumasi that the manipulated figures so far discovered could significantly affect the outcome of the elections.

He said two Information Communication experts had been commissioned to examine the Parliamentary votes as well.

In Accra, Communications Director Nana Akomea said the party intended to put the evidence gathered before the Supreme Court on December 30, in line with the legal framework of lodging electoral protests within 21 days.

"The evidence that we are gathering is overwhelming, and that we want to present the evidence in the fullest of details," Nana Akomea told the media.

The largest party in opposition has assured the nation that the NPP would abide by whatever ruling the Supreme Court would make on their case.

In the meantime, the party in Parliament would decide before Parliament rises on Friday, whether or not to boycott the inauguration of the President on January 7. The conventional wisdom is that the party in opposition may not be at the Independence Square when the newly-elected Head of State of the Republic legally assumes duty.

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