Samia ( right) interacting with the media after the press conference
The leadership of the Convention People’s Party (CPP) yesterday emphasised that it was elected to advance strategies that would make the party a credible political force and would therefore not be stampeded into taking actions that would not advance the interest of the party.
Ms Samia Yabah Nkrumah, leader and chairperson of the party made this known when she addressed a press conference in Accra to break CPP’s silence on what it called certain calculated attempts to discredit the new leadership of the party, including the orchestrated negative media campaign against it.
She said those calculated attempts were detrimental to the morale of the party’s supporters, sympathizers and well-wishers.
“Prominent among these is the call by one section of the party led by Paa Kwesi Nduom , our former flag-bearer, for us to hold congress to elect our presidential candidate before the end of the year”.
She noted that over the past month, a negative campaign had been orchestrated against the leadership, particularly singling her, the chairperson, out for condemnation.
“These orchestrated efforts started with a spate of negative publicity in the form of articles with headlines such as “What are Samia and the New CPP Leadership doing to the Party”; “CPP for Doom”; 3) “CPP Executives Sabotaging the Party”, she said, adding that all of these had appeared within November 2011.
Ms. Nkrumah said if these were, indeed, concerns of genuine party members, they should not have been directed to the media rather than to the national executives. “How does maligning our leadership in the public domain serve the interests of the Party?”, she asked.
She pointed out that “by the rules that govern the CPP, grievances have to be addressed internally, in the first instance”.
“In recent days, this systematic and orchestrated attempt to undermine the authority and agenda of the leadership has culminated in a threat to convene an emergency National Executive Council (NEC) without recourse to the leadership, including announcing on radio and TV the date for the supposed NEC”.
“Is this not an act of indiscipline which is meant to discredit the party? Particularly as all other presidential aspirants are prepared to help the new leadership to prepare the ground for the congress to be held in the first quarter of next year?”, she asked.
Ms. Nkrumah said before arriving at any decision on behalf of the party she had always sought consensus, adding “and I am happy to say that the majority of the party is behind me”.
“Our party is not divided and what is percieved as division, is what I as leader and chairperson of the party, consider as indiscipline, selfishness and an attempt to impose a course of action on the whole party by Paa Kwesi Nduom; a course of action that in the past has only got our presidential candidate 1.3 per cent of the national vote. This is unacceptable”, she emphasised.
She made it clear that NEC meeting could not be convened because the party’s council was not fully constituted, adding that there was a consensus that there should be a six months’ interval between the congress to elect national officers and the election of the flagbearer.
“Organising a congress takes time and to organize a successful congress the new executives will need at least a few months before our next congress”she stated.
Ms. Nkrumah said it was her view, since taking office, that the first priority of the new executives was to organize the Party at the polling station level and motivate its activists without the distraction or disruption of competing interests for the flagbearship.
“This is what selfish and sectarian interests wish to disrupt and they must not be allowed to succed”she pointed out.
She urged members of the party to make a decisive stand to act as men and women of conviction and principle and to remember that the party was built on selflessness and self-determination and for freedom from oppression and exploitation.
“We need your help to redeem this party so that we can provide Ghanaians with politicians and the programmes to contribute to Ghana’s transformation. The CPP must change to pursue this agenda of equality”.
Among the leading members of the party at the function were, Professor Edmund Delle and Mr. George Aguddey.
Dr. Nduom could not be reached by this paper to comment on the issue but one of his aides told the Times on telephone that Dr Nduom would come out with a statement on it later.