I won't be part of CPP if - Nduom

Paa Kwesi Nduom

Wed, 21 Jul 2010 Source: Ghanaian Times

The flag-bearer of the Convention People's Party (CPP) in the 2008 elections, Dr. Paa Kwesi Nduom has declared that unless the CPP and the People's National Convention (PNC) merge, he will not be part of the CPP's activities in the 2012 elections.

In an interview with the Times, Dr. Nduom said the only thing that would compel him to continue to be part of the CPP was when members of the two parties in the regions and constituencies ignored the leadership and merged into one party.

“For me, it is a make or break affair as far as politics is concerned. If it works out fine. It is these mediocre and selfish interests who are not ready to sacrifice for this to happen”, he said.

Dr. Nduom said Ghanaians wanted to vote for a party that was capable of wining power in order not to spoil their votes, so he would not waste his time on a fragmented political tradition.

“Individually, they say we are good but they say you either get well prepared or don't bother us. If you know this then why do I waste my time, energy and resources when people are not ready to move on with the unity agenda?” he said.

Dr. Nduom said those who supported him financially in the 2008 elections were ready to support him again only if there was unity in the tradition. If care was not taken, he said the activities of those who did not want to sacrifice to build an independent party would lead to the eventual death of the CPP tradition.

Also, he warned, if the unity process was not started in good time for parties to organize and go to congress and become competitive in the 2010; the CPP tradition should be forgotten.

“I have been working since 1992 to help build the CPP, but if it cannot work what else can I do?”

Giving the genesis of the merger talks, he said it started after the 1996 elections and resulted in what he described as “a partial merger” between the two parties.

He said the late Dr. Hilla Limann and Kojo Botsio spearheaded the talks which led to the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding for the CPP and PNC to come together.

After the deaths of the two, he said the two parties had met separately and affirmed their desire to unite. Subsequently, the two parties had constantly engaged each other on the need to merge.

Dr. Nduom said at its Central Committee meeting, the CPP set up a seven-member committee to work with the chairman of the party to explore ways of merging the two parties. Apart from the wish of many other people that the process would have been completed by now, there were seriously agitations from members of the two parties at the grassroots to push the unity agenda.

He said it was unfortunate that the leadership of the two parties at the national level had still not been able to make that dream a reality although the foot soldiers were ready.

In his opinion, the merger of the two parties could even serve as recognition of the contributions by the late Dr. Limann and Botsio to the sustenance of the Nkrumaist tradition.

Reacting to Dr. Nduom's sentiments, the chairman of the CPP, Ladi Nylander, acknowledged Dr. Nduom's right to associate with any group, but asked him to exercise restrains and assist in the unity talks with the PNC. He admitted that it was very frustrating to see the Nkrumaist tradition divided, but stated that Dr. Nduom, as a key figure in the CPP should exercise restraint and assist in the unity talks.

Mr. Nylander expressed optimism that the two sides would find a formula to achieve unity to which the CPP was fully committed.

The chairman of the PNC, Alhaji Ahmed Ramadan, said unity among the Nkrumaist groups would be a good thing, but described Dr. Nduom's statements as “too extreme”.

He said coming together should be a process and not an event. “There are a few things that need to be done for us to move on with the process”, he said.

“We need to continue to talk because for him to say he will not be part of anything concerning the Nkrumaist tradition will be too discouraging to us”.

Source: Ghanaian Times