Crisis in NDC parliamentary caucus leaves national leaders divided, supporters frustrated

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The opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) appears to be still struggling to find its feet solidly positioned on the country’s political turf following its humiliating defeat in the 2016 and 2020 general elections.

Members of the party had banged their hopes on their parliamentary caucus to salvage the party. This followed the good number of seats it axed from the governing NPP in the 2020 general election and its ability to win the Speakership position on the eve of January 7, 2021.

However, the inability of the parliamentary caucus to do the bidding of the party has set the party in flames.

Reconstituting leadership

To this end, the party says it is now considering reconstituting its parliamentary leadership. The party’s General Secretary, Johnson Asiedu Nketiah, who hinted of this on Tuesday said the party would use the recess period to effect the changes.

“There is some work in progress. After every election, we reconstitute the leadership of Parliament, even if it means reconfirming them.

“We haven’t done that yet because of the court cases. We started but got to a point and felt that we needed to finish with the court cases first. So it is something we are considering. But there will be a definite statement. I am sure by the time, they (Parliament) return from the break, we would have taken this decision,” he said in an interview with Accra based Citi TV.

The party’s National Communications Officer, Sammy Gyamfi, early last month, descended heavily on the leadership of the parliamentary caucus, as well as the Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin, labelling them as saboteurs who had betrayed the party.

According to the vociferous Sammy Gyamfi, the Speaker of Parliament, Minority Leader Haruna Iddrissu and Minority Chief Whip Muntaka Mubarak brazenly defied the leadership of the NDC “and betrayed the collective good for their selfish interest”, by helping to approve some nominees of President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo.

His vituperation was immediately responded to by Mr Muntaka and MP for Ningo-Prampram, Sam George.

Parliamentary crisis

Yesterday, the NDC North Tongu MP, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, announced his resignation from Parliament’s Appointments Committee. His resignation followed the approval by consensus of Ken Ofori-Atta as the Minister of Finance and Economic Planning.

In a letter dated March 30, addressed to the Speaker, he explained that his decision was “after days of careful reflection and thoughtful considerations.”

“I shall like to state that the reasons for this difficult decision are both personal and on principle,” he said in the letter.

The MP for Bolgatanga Central, Isaac Adongo, has publicly criticised the Minority’s decision to approve Mr Ofori-Atta. Already, some MPs, including Alhassan Suhuyini, Clement Apaak, among others, have publicly rebuked their colleagues who passed the first set of President Akufo-Addo’s appointees.

However, MP for Tamale South and leader of the NDC Caucus in Parliament, Haruna Iddrisu, maintains that all is well within his camp, despite reports of rift among the caucus.

According to him, his role as leader of the opposition in Parliament is unwavering, despite attempts to undermine his position.

“We look forward to cooperation and collaboration, but let not anybody exaggerate that I have more than what I have, which is known parametrically and numerically…Don’t forget that I am in Parliament in my own right as the elected Member of Parliament for Tamale South,” he told the Parliamentary Press Corps yesterday.

Frustrated supporters

Meanwhile, sentiments of the party’s supporters on social media show that of a frustrated group.

Yesterday, the party’s 2020 parliamentary candidate for Mampong, Dr Frank Amoakohene, stated that there is “a fierce frustration and feeling of betrayal among the grassroots as a result of the recent developments from the parliament of Ghana.”

According to him, the frustration among the party’s grassroots is borne out of the approval of President Akufo-Addo’s appointees, especially that of Mr Ofori-Atta, by consensus.

“The truth here is that approval by consensus is a vindication of the man on all the numerous accusations levelled against him.

“The worst of it is that this singular action makes the NDC complicit of everything that has resulted in the loss of livelihoods and the total hardship Ghanaians are facing at the moment!” he said.

Dr Amoakohene called on the leadership of the party to “wake up and remedy the fast-dwindling confidence of the grassroots in the party before it is too late.”

 

 

 

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