Pollster, Ben Ephson has urged the Council of Elders of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) to impress upon leading member of the party and former Education Minister Lee Ocran to apologize to the founder of the party and ex-President J.J Rawlings for disrespecting him.Mr. Lee Ocran who also served as High Commissioner to South Africa under the Mills administration has asked aspirants who are complaining that the forms and filing fees totaling GH¢420,000 is outrageous to go to the party’s founder and former President Jerry John Rawlings for support.
“They say they are going to their founder. Let them go there if he gives them their money, the Congress will be held”, he said.
The aspirants including Second Deputy Speaker, Alban Sumana Kingsford Bagbin, Sylvester Mensah, Dr Ekwow Spio Garbrah, Joshua Alabi, Goosie Tanoh and Elikplem Agbemava are calling on the former president to intervene in the matter before their throats are slit.
But Mr Lee Ocran has called the bluff of Presidential hopefuls of the party who are raising concerns over the recently released filing fees of four hundred thousand Ghana cedis (GHC420,000) asked them to go sleep if they are unable to raise the stated amount.
“When they go to the constituencies they give money to people to campaign for them and so on. Now when they come to Accra come and pay for us we organize the final function for you…No! that one you have no money. If you have no money stay at home don’t participate. Those who want to participate will find money to pay”, he stated on Western Today a socio-political programme hosted by Kwame Malcolm which airs on Empire FM.
However Ben Ephson in an interview with sit-in host Akwasi Nsiah on Anopa Kasapa on Kasapa FM Thursday thinks Lee Ocran was discourteous in his comments against the party founder and must do the honourable thing of apologizing.
“I think the Council of Elders should ask him to apologize to the founder, he didn’t speak well. He was being rude and cheeky and I think that it does not go well for respect for the Founder (Rawlings). I think the Council of Elders should draw his attention to retract and apologize publicly to Rawlings because he spoke against him publicly. His comments were in very bad taste, that respect for the founder must be there.
“Even if Lee Ocran’s child had been elected Secretary to a party and the child says something he doesn’t need to come out publicly to criticize him or her. Again, one, Rawlings is older than him, two, he’s the Founder of the party and I think that there are many better ways in which he could have put his comments.