Rift In UFP Deepens

The rift between the  2012 presidential candidate of the United Front Party (UFP), Mr Akwasi Addai, aka Odike, and the  Founder of UFP, Nana Agyenim Boateng, better known as Gyataba, seems to have no end.

The party has reinstated its National Chairman, Nana Agyenim Boateng, who was suspended in August 2012 for allegedly contradicting the party’s rules and regulations.

It has rather indefinitely barred its former flag bearer, Mr Addai,  from being “a member holding any position in the party or putting himself up for election to any position in the party”.                 

A statement signed by the Acting National Chairman, Mr Stephen Forson, and issued by the party in Accra said the decision was taken after the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the UFP met in Accra on Monday to chart the way forward and resolve all outstanding issues.    

Consequently,and according to a Ghana News Agency report, the current Acting National Chairman, Mr Forson, resumes his former position as the First Vice Chairman of the party.  

Two other personalities, Samuel Bekoe Owusu, the party’s General Secretary, and Kennedy Saku, National Youth Organiser, have been suspended indefinitely. The NEC has also dismissed from the UFP Mr Razak Kojo Opoku, Deputy General Secretary, who was suspended in 2012, "for aiding and abetting unconstitutional activities”.                                                                                                                                                  

The NEC resolved at the meeting to open nominations for the election of national and regional executive officers.    

The election of regional and national executives is slated for March 2015 and August 2015 respectively.

The statement said the election of the flag bearer of the party for the 2016 general election would be held in October 2015. 

The NEC also resolved to establish a legal committee to look at pertinent issues among other things as the party strengthened internal democracy and prepared itself for the 2016 Election.

It would be recalled that the Kumasi  police recently arrested Mr Addai for allegedly threatening to eliminate the founder of the party, but he, in an interview, denied that he had been arrested.

The Kumasi police, however , told the media that  the 2012 presidential candidate of the UFP was under investigation for death threats.

Until the NEC decided the fate  of Mr Addai and the others,  the party had issued a disclaimer on the three that anyone who dealt with them with regard to party business or related business did so at his or her own risk.

According to Nana Agyenim Boateng , it came to the notice of  the party that Mr Addai, in the company of the two, had been moving from one region to another to conduct  elections without the knowledge and approval of the NEC.

He said the party was also surprised to receive  information from the Electoral Commission (EC)  to the effect that the UFP had scheduled Saturday, January 24, 2015, for its congress to elect national executive officers as well as declare Mr Addae as the 2016 presidential candidate.

He said the then Acting Chairman, Mr Forson, through the party’s counsel, Mr Oliver Abada of the Abada, Dzeble and Co Chambers, on January 19, 2015 wrote to the EC on the rift  in the UFP.

The preamble of the letter, a copy which the Daily Graphic chanced upon, read: “We act as lawyers for and on behalf of the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the United Front Party (UFP)”.

It said the party had not yet conducted its regional and national elections let alone the flag bearer election and that the position of Mr Addai as the  2016 flag bearer of the party was not tenable and must be declared null and void.

The letter advised  the EC to not allow its hard-won reputation to be dragged in the mud by allowing “these individuals to mislead” the EC “into supporting a cause which is unconstitutional and illegal”.

However, according to the Ghana News Agency, Mr Addai and the two had defended the conduct of the  regional and national executive elections, saying it was proper and constitutional.

A statement issued by solicitors on behalf of the three said there was absolutely nothing wrong or unconstitutional about the opening of nominations and subsequent polls to elect new officers to run the affairs of the party.

Mr Addai  told the Daily Graphic the UFP was looking up to the EC as the final arbiter to decide the appropriate date for its national congress and that the party did not recognise Agyenim Boateng and his NEC.