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NPP To Empower Constituencies
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The New Patriotic Party (NPP) is likely to pass its proposed amendments by consensus at its National Delegates Conference in Accra next month. This is the opinion of the party’s Communications Director, Kwaku Kwarteng, expressed during a meeting in Sunyani on Sunday. Speaking to party faithfuls and the media, The NPP Director of Communications said the proposed amendments would make the party the first in the country to allow broad grassroots participation in the selection of its presidential and parliamentary candidates and in the election of party officers.

The amendments, he pointed out “are designed to empower the party’s constituency officers and democratise decision-making within the party instead of over centralisation away from Accra.” He said constituency elections would soon be held to elect constituency officers and unless these amendments are adopted, the fate of many hardworking constituency officers would be decided by a narrow electoral college, that is, polling station chairpersons. “This is not fair. Many of our experienced and hardworking constituency officers have differences with some of their pollingstation chairpersons through no fault of theirs”.

It is therefore necessary to expand our electoral college for electing our officers to make the process more democratic. That is the only way we can strengthen our constituency executives and by extension, the party at the constituencies.” Mr. Kwarteng added that though the current system of selecting leaders has served the party well, there is nothing wrong with improving upon it. “With the amendments, the presidential primaries would be conducted in the constituencies with all polling station executives as delegates. Aspirants would have to go to constituency officers and ask for help in presenting their messages to the constituency. That again would empower our constituency officers and grassroots,” he said. Responding to questions about disagreements over expansion of the electoral colleges proposal, the Deputy Director of Communications, Perry Okudzeto said those disagreements are gradually being resolved.

“There are some in the party who genuinely believe the NPP must maintain the status quo. But there is increasing realisation that to win the 2012 general elections, the empowerment of our constituency officers inherent in the amendments is necessary,” he stressed. “It is very likely that by the time the National Delegate’s Conference comes up, we would have achieved consensus.” Early this year, proposals for constitutional amendments were made to the leadership of the NPP. The National Council, which is the highest authority next to the National Delegates Conference has reviewed the proposals and made recommendations for the upcoming Delegates Conference billed for the Trade Fair site, Accra on August 15th.
The Communications Director urged members to help in mobilising floating voters in the region to help the party to win in 2012.
Source: Daily Guide

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