The National Vetting Committee of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) has disqualified the Deputy Western Regional Minister Madam Emelia Arthur from contesting against the incumbent MP for the Shama Constituency, Hon. Gabriel Kojo Essilfie.
Although reasons for her disqualification have not been made known, there had been issues with her membership and loyalty to the NDC.
The election for the Shama Constituency was suspended last Saturday because disagreements over the candidature of the former Shama DCE had not been resolved.
Whilst the entire constituency executives insisted that Madam Emelia Arthur was not an active card-bearing member of the party, and thus, ineligible to contest, some polling station executives, rooted for her candidature maintaining that she was a loyal member of the NDC and better placed to retain the seat for the party.
Although Madam Arthur successfully went through the regional vetting, which was described by the constituency executives as fraudulent, it appears she was unlucky with executives at the national level who sat on the matter.
The constituency executives had threatened to resign en bloc if she was cleared to contest.
The Western Regional Chairman of the NDC, Nana Toku, who spoke to Maxx News, did not give reasons for her disqualification except to say that it is in the interest of the party.
According to him, the decision was taken solely by the national executives after they had deliberated on a report forwarded by the regional wing. He said the national executives also held talks with Madam Emelia Arthur and impressed upon her to support the incumbent in the larger interest of the party.
Nana Toku said the incumbent MP has also been advised to remain calm. He noted that regional executives with support from the national headquarters will embark on a campaign to unite the disgruntled groups in the constituency to forge ahead in unity in the 2012 elections.
“It is my party issues so I don’t want to go into details. The issue is that they have spoken to Madam Emelia Arthur and she understands that she has to allow her colleague to go and we have been talking to the incumbent to remain calm so we all join hands together for the NDC’s victory” the Regional Chairman said.
Meanwhile the group of polling station executives who endorsed Madam Arthur’s candidature say they might support her to go independent. But that decision is to be taken at a news conference on Thursday. Spokesperson for the group, Famous Hotorwovi, told Maxx News Madam Arthur is billed to attend the press conference to speak to them.
“The constituency executives who are doing that do not like the woman. But we grassroots people who work for the party prefer the woman. The decision they have taken will bring problems for the NDC in the Shama Constituency and we will advice ourselves. We only heard on radio that she has been disqualified with no reasons” he said.
However, Madam Emelia Arthur, a two-time parliamentary candidate of the National Reform Party (NRP) in 2000 and 2004, has remained silent about these developments.