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Spio re-affirms support for Prof. Mills

Fri, 1 Feb 2008 Source: GNA

Accra, Feb. 01. GNA - Dr. Ekwow Spio-Garbrah, Ghana's Former Minister of Education, Communications on Thursday re-affirmed his wholehearted support for the National Dememocratic Congress (NDC) and NDC Flag bearer Professor John Atta-Mills .

He categorically disassociated himself from commentaries and speculations being pandered by NPP media houses and negative propagandists regarding possibilities of another NDC Congress, or attempts to link him with negative comments made by any groups of people against Prof. Mills on grounds of his health or campaign methods. He therefore urged the rank and file of NDC members to continue to rally behind the party and its chosen leaders.

A statement released in Accra by "Friends of Spio-Garbrah" said after the NDC Congress of December 2006, Dr. Spio-Garbrah and other aspirants publicly acknowledged Prof. Mill's victory and pledged to work with him for an NDC victory in December 2008 national elections. Subsequently, he asked a number of his senior campaign operatives notably Mr. Eric Ametor-Quarmyne and Mr. Kweku Ampah, to join the Atta Mills Campaign team and to assist the re-elected flag bearer to prosecute his campaign.

Mr. Ametor-Quarmyne has since been appointed Deputy Spokesman of Prof. Mills campaign, and he and several other colleagues from the Spio-Garbrah campaign team continue to work for Prof. Mills to this day.

The statement said Dr. Spio-Garbrah, his recent visit to Ghana met with Prof. Mills and other leaders within the NDC in January 2008 and again re-affirmed his support for Prof. Mills and the NDC in three major television interviews and in follow-up interviews with dozens of radio stations across the country.

By all accounts from Party rank-and-file, Dr Spio-Garbrah's brief public appearances in Ghana recently helped to buoy up the hopes and enthusiasm of Party members across the country, on behalf of Prof Mills.

Upon learning early this month from various interactions with party officials that one of the major challenges facing the Prof. Mills and NDC campaign was that of inadequate funding, Dr. Spio-Garbrah quickly arranged to announce at party headquarters a pledge of 100 million cedis (GH¢10,000) for the NDC and Mills campaign, and made an immediate down payment of 10 million cedis (GHC1,000) towards this pledge.

During that event, Dr Spio-Garbrah informed the national executives and the media present that he was only a salaried employee, and that there were many more NDC former functionaries and sympathetic businessmen who could do more than he was doing. However, he hoped that his token effort would inspire many other members to come forward and assist, no matter how small their donations.

It has been gratifying to Dr. Spio-Garbrah, therefore, that since his gesture, another colleague previous aspirant, Alhaji Mahama Idrissu, has recently donated a pick-up truck to also assist the party. The former Education Minister is confident that these worthy examples will lead to other donations in the coming weeks to the party which will assist Prof. Mills in his campaign.

"It may be recalled that during the 2006 NDC flagbearership campaign, Dr Spio-Garbrah was the candidate who announced three golden principles of his campaign: namely, that if he lost the contest, first, he would not leave the Party; second, he would not form another party; and third, he would support whoever won the contest. He then invited each of the flagbearer candidates to make the same pledge, and indeed proposed that they should sign an undertaking if necessary at Party headquarters. He still stands by that pledge. When he came in second in the vote count during the NDC congress to Professor Mills, he immediately before the thousands of teeming supporters openly pledged his support for the NDC flagbearer, Prof Mills.

" Dr Ekwow Spio-Garbrah since his second-place finish in the December 2006 primaries continued to work hard for the Party, amongst others by helping to open and strengthen NDC branches in the UK and around Europe, and by providing various ideas to party officials on fund-raising, campaign strategy, and effective communication. He has also been privately assisting many NDC aspirants for positions of Member of Parliament in various constituencies in Ghana.

" Dr Ekwow Spio-Garbrah is currently under contract as CEO of the Commonwealth Telecommunications Organization in London, he sits on the boards of two of the world's largest international telecom companies, and is currently busy at work meeting political and telecom leaders in various parts of the world, from Asia to the Caribbean and Africa. He therefore has no interest whatsoever in negatively affecting the successful prosecution of the campaign against the NPP in December 2008.

"Against this background of facts regarding Dr. Spio-Garbrah's actual verifiable actions, it comes to him as a great disappointment that some faceless individuals have begun their usual dirty propaganda against him, by linking him to any negative commentaries being made in Ghana by party members who may be assessing the Party's of electoral success in 2008, and have cited Prof. Mill's health as a factor. "Dr Spio-Garbrah wishes to make it abundantly clear that he is not part of any conspiracy or group within the NDC that is plotting a coup against Prof Mills, or that is seeking another NDC Congress. He also considers illogical and laughable that some of these same propagandists, after trying to brand him during the 2006 campaign or flag bearship as an arrogant person (implying that he cannot be easily manipulated) can now turn around 180 degrees and begin to describe him as a "yes-man" who some NDC leaders wish to impose on the Party so he can do their bidding.

"Dr. Spio-Garbrah is of the view that any institution or organisation must continually take stock of its performance and its strengths and weaknesses. Where that organisation recognises that it is weak in certain areas, the best recourse, as Dr Spio-Garbrah demonstrated during his recent visit to Ghana, is to take positive remedial actions, such as he did by making a donation or going on a media offensive, in order to improve the situation.

"He does not believe that a public, bitter power-struggle is the way for the NDC to strengthen itself. Because he is aware that the NDC has powerful opponents who will take advantage of current developments in the NDC to weaken the Party's electoral chances, especially by trying to knock the heads of some of its leaders against each other.

The statement said Dr Spio-Garbrah therefore "pleads with the entire leadership of the Party not to allow any differences of opinion on the way forward (debates which all parties face from time to time) to be exploited by its opponents. He also pleads with all propagandists who are pandering to the interest of any particular groups, forces or individuals to try to put the Party's interest first." 01 Feb. 2008

Source: GNA