Ashanti NDC Sets Timetable For Elections

The Ashanti regional branch of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) has drawn a strict timetable to ensure that by October 5, 2014 the region would have completed all its ward, constituency and regional elections. According to the party, executives at all levels in the region have been informed that all ward elections must be completed before July 19, 2014, to be followed by constituency elections before August 31, 2014. Briefing the Daily Graphic in Kumasi yesterday, the Regional Secretary of the party, Mr Raymond Tandoh, said the climax would be the regional elections scheduled to take place before October 5, 2014. Mr Tandoh said after the ward elections, the details and pictures of those elected would be forwarded to the constituency and that would be used for the constituency elections, replicating the process for the region at election. Grass-roots party He noted that the NDC was a grass-roots party, which encourages people from diverse backgrounds to hold positions, adding that “We don’t encourage elitism in this great family. We encourage farmers, fishermen, traders, professors, doctors, students, teachers, drivers, mechanics and all to vie for positions in the party.” He added that if the delegates, being the kingmakers, decided on anyone, the party was obliged to accept the choice made as had been the principle in the NDC since its formation. Party ID card Mr Tandoh, however, stated that these elections would not be conducted based on the party’s biometric cards that were being issued currently. He explained that the biometric card would be used for future elections and other purposes and not the forthcoming elections, and urged interested members who were qualified to contest the party positions. Who qualifies for a card? To qualify for the biometric card, Mr Tandoh indicated that those members already having membership card would have to pay Gh˘1 to their branch executives and the money, together with their details, would be forwarded to the regional office. Mr Tandoh insisted that no registration would be done at the constituency or regional levels. The move, he explained, was to ensure that people participated actively and paid their dues at the ward level. New members He said the party had agreed to expand its membership base, and so all new members seeking to join the party were welcome but they would be registered if they were introduced by a card-bearing member. They would also pay the Gh˘1 for the card after their particulars had been lodged with the ward secretary. Rush for cards He expressed surprise at the increasing number of request from various wards for the identity card, and described it as an indication of how the party membership base was growing in the Ashanti Region. “This is a clear indication that our quest to work assiduously to secure one million votes in the next election is on track. We will remain focused and work hard to achieve that.”