The Presidential candidate for the National Reform Party (NRP) in the 2000 Presidential election, Goosie Tanoh, has joined the NDC Presidential candidate contest.
The National Reform Party is a registered political party in Ghana. It was founded in 1999 by a splinter group from the National Democratic Congress (NDC) who kicked against the famous Swedru Declaration. Mr Gossie Tanoh, Kyeretwie Opoku and Peter Kpordugbe founded the group in 1999. Per the Electoral Commission’s records, the NRP is still one of the recognised political organisations in the country. As he officially presents his letter of intent to the party there are lingering questions on the minds of some members of the NDC begging for answers.
-Has he officially resigned his position as the leader of the National Reform Party?
-When did he register as a member of the NDC?
-Did he write officially to the party and did he go through the party’s readmission procedure?
One of the problems the NDC faced in the run-up to the 2000 Presidential and Parliamentary elections was the decision by some disgruntled leaders of the party to break away to form splinter groups. The National Reform Party was formed out of the NDC, it fielded a Presidential candidate and some parliamentary candidates. The cumulative effect of the NRP fielding its candidates and independent (NDC) candidates was that they split the potential NDC votes leading to NPP candidates winning.
The NDC lost 15 parliamentary seats as a result of the NRP candidates and the independent candidates having split NDC votes. In the Shama constituency for example, the NDC candidate had 6,498 votes (31.3%) and the National Reform Party candidate had 6,998 votes (29.1%). The total of the NDC and NRP votes was 13,496 which was higher than what the NPP candidate had (8,284)
In the 2000 run off, Gossie and his folks made things difficult for Prof Mills and the NDC by entering into overt and covert alliance with the NPP. Three of the disgruntled members who contested as independent candidates won their seats and served in Kufour’s administration.
In the 2004 election, the NRP fielded parliamentary candidates in some constituencies and this weakened the NDC in some of its strong holds. The Party rejected NDC’s alliance proposal with the excuse that the policies of the NDC and the NPP were almost the same. The NPP established itself comfortably in some hitherto strongholds of the NDC because of NRP’s anti NDC stances and activities in these constituencies. Some of the parties archivists, leaders and former parliamentary candidates later joined the NDC and played enormous roles in the party’s 2012/2016 elections.
But Goosie and others who founded the Party remained with the NRP. We welcome Mr Gossie on board but we need a new mindset about the NDC project. Let us start off by admitting the mistakes of the past. What needs to be refined is the question of standard. There should be no question of employing procedures and methods alien to our tradition in the name of internal internal revolution, just as there should be no question of abandoning the principle of probity and accountability. Intra party conflict in Ghana is not new occurrence.
Breaking away from your mother political organisation because of internal disagreements is unacceptable.
What Goosie and his folks should know is that- intra party conflict is one of the features of party politics. This is not unconnected with the divergence nature of men that makes us to adopt different approaches in an attempt to achieve the same goal. We must see ourselves as assemblage of men with similar view on how best to run Ghana.
Goosie, Kyeretwie and others kicked against Chairman Rawlings’ Swedru Declaration and made all manner of reckless pronouncements and comments in the media against the founder and all who supported the founder’s position. Years after that needless demonization of the founder, Gossie and his group have seen the importance and astuteness of the founder.
Intra party conflict is a recurrent phenomenon that finds expression in different forms and at different stages in the process of party building. We pray and hope he doesn’t repeat what he did in 2000 as he rejoin the NDC and pray he doesn’t join forces with our opponents when he becomes aggrieved.
Source: Ohenenana Obonti Krow