Come tomorrow, almost 280,000 delegates of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) are expected to cast their vote to elect a flag bearer to represent the party in the upcoming 2020 Election.
So far, all is set for the election, which will take place in all the party’s constituencies nationwide and will be conducted by the country’s electoral body, the Electoral Commission.
In all, seven aspirants, including, former President John Dramani Mahama, will battle it out for the slot of the flag bearer.
The others include the Second Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Mr Alban Kingsford Sumani Bagbin; former Vice Chancellor of University of Professional Studies, Accra (UPSA), Prof. Joshua Alabi; former Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA), Mr Sylvester Mensah.
The rest are a former Minister of Trade and Industry, Mr Ekwow Spio-Garbrah; businessman, Alhaji Nurideen Iddrisu, and a cadre, Mr Goosie Tanoh.
Speaking to the Daily Graphic regarding the party’s preparedness for the election, the Deputy General Secretary of the party, Mr Peter Boamah Otukonor, said all the necessary arrangements had been put in place to ensure a smooth, free and fair election whose outcome will be acceptable to all.
“The party is ready for Saturday’s election. All the needed party arrangements have been put in place. The EC is also ready. Saturday we will have our elections,” he told the Daily Graphic.
He said that the whole election process will be led by the EC and supported by the election directorate of the constituency and constituency executives.
He also disclosed that the EC took over after printing of ballot was completed for onward distribution to various regions and constituencies.
As part of the party’s resolve to conduct a peaceful presidential primary, the Administrator at the party’s headquarters, Mr Prince Addo, also said the party had decided to liaise with the Ghana Police Service (GPS) to provide adequate security for the entire seven contestants, delegates and observers that would throng the various voting centres in the country.
“We have already met with the Inspector General of Police, Mr David Asante-Appeatu and ironed out the formalities that would see the deployment of enough police personnel for the Saturday election,” he said.
According to Mr Addo, the party had written to all the executive members and leaders in all constituencies to adhere to the security directives and give the police enough room to do their work.
He warned that any individual or groups that might ignore the directive would do so at their own risk.
Mr Addo said provisions had also been made for voters who might not be in the country to cast their ballot.
“All external branches will have the opportunity to cast their vote at the party’s headquarters on Saturday. Nobody will be left out in this voting,” he said.
In a related development, the Ghana Police Service has issued a warning that it would not tolerate or permit any person or group of individuals who would parade themselves as external security before, during and after the NDC flag bearer elections.
A statement signed by the Director General in charge of Public Affairs Directorate at the Police Headquarters, ACP Mr David Eklu, said authorised persons found to be within a certain security parameters would not be spared at all.
The statement also said that no registered or unregistered motorbikes would be allowed at the various voting centres during and after the primary.
It said the police would be solely in charge of all the various security structures at the various voting centres.
“The police are urging party members and the public to adhere to this directives to avoid any confrontations,” the statement added.