Can the Patriots retake the Centre Ground?

Thu, 29 Mar 2007 Source: Jeffrey, Peter

The Patriots are ordinary men and women of Ghana who wants to create the environment where every Ghanaian is given a fair and just chance to make a meaningful contribution to the development of Ghana. As patriotic Ghanaians, they want to restore hope to the hopeless and improve the lives of everyone.

As the infighting among the NPP presidential candidates comes to the fore, can the CPP Patriots take advantage of the this disunity and present to the Ghanaian people credible and alternative policies for government?

Despite the notion of divisions within the Nkruamhists fraternity, a new group has emerged called the Patriots whose agenda is “Ghana before self”. This group is made of up academics, businessmen, students, market women, fishermen, workers, farmers, politicians, professionals (doctors, teachers, lawyers, service men and women and technocrats) and the unemployed. The Patriots share one common aim, which is the socio-economic development of Ghana now, and they believe that by giving opportunity to everyone, Ghana can become a great nation again and the Black Star of Africa, thus their motto: “Ghana before Self, Ghana Deserves Better”.

The question to ask is, who are the Patriots and what do they stand for?

The Patriots are a committed group of Nkrumahists who never deserted the family after 1981. Many of its members are in the prime age range of 20 to 50 and are bond together by the ideas that underpinned Dr Kwame Nkrumah’s “One Ghana” philosophy. The Patriots are drawing their strategies to prepare for government, and have drawn a 10 year development plan that they think would enable Ghana to become a middle income country within a decade.. Based on their philosophy, “Prosperity for all Ghanaians” the Patriots are fighting back to take the political initiative from the ruling New Patriotic Party and the main opposition National Democratic Congress.

The Patriots want to create a credible and alternative national development agenda with a mixture of Import Substitution development and market led growth. The Patriots do not oppose the role of the private sector in national development, in fact they do believe the private sector can and must aid the state and the civil sectors to become more productive. The Patriots political ideology is firmly in the centre.

What makes the emergence of the Patriots more exciting in contemporary Ghanaian politics is the blend of its membership. The Patriots is a broad church and the discipline among the membership is amazing, considering that there are people within the group that hold different views but are very accommodating and united.

The quality of the leadership is brilliant and that makes one wonders why with such talent at their disposal that the PNC, GCPP and others who claim to be Nkrumahists are failing to unite around the Patriots. This is precisely why the Patriots are taking the initiative to unite under the banner of the CPP and become the party that opened up opportunities to all Ghanaians irrespective of tribe, social status or disability.

Those emerging within this group who have dedicated themselves to the tenets of open and transparent government are Dr Vladimir Antwi-Danso who is a leading member of the Patriots, Yoofi Thompson (National Organiser of the Patriots), Bright Akwetey (Vice National Chairman of the Patriots) and Eric Benyarko (National Chairman of the Patriots) all in Ghana. In London, the Chairman of the CPP UK and Ireland, Dr Nii Amarh Akromfrah and Mr Kwesi Budu who is the CPP North American chairman are known to share the ideas and philosophies of the Patriots. There are other Patriots whose wealth of knowledge and rich experience would benefit Ghana immensely, such as Yaw Adu Larbi, Ekow Nelson, Ade Sawyer, Dr Nii Moi Thompson (general secretary of the CPP), Dr Kwaku Safo and Nana Owusu Syekere.

The Patriots are fighting back to rekindle the CPP’s organisational skills and fighting spirit which is second to none. The Patriots wants to make the CPP electable again. They have pitched their tent firmly at the centre ground.

Among the leading members of the Patriots, the youthful Dr Vladimir Antwi-Danso is clearly emerging as the most talented and credible person who has the bright prospects to enjoy a massive support countrywide under the CPP banner. Is Dr Antwi-Danso ready to declare his intention to seek the CPP flag bearership?

Who is Dr Antwi-Danso?

Dr Antwi-Danso is a lecturer at the Centre for International Affairs, University of Ghana, Legon. He is among the few talented members of the CPP who stood their ground and never deserted the party when others jump ship and joined the NDC and the NPP.

Earlier last year Dr Antwi-Danso called on the CPP leadership to subject their stewardship to early congress and reiterated that the CPP had been burden with the lack of visionary leaders who can galvanise the people, as late Alhaji Egala did in the late 1970s. Until last year very few people know him or have even heard of his name.

In an interview he gave to the leading Ghanaian daily, the Daily Graphic, Dr Antwi-Danso said, “the party is in dire need of dynamic, patriotic and selfless leadership that would create the vehicle to move Nkrumahism forward so as to make the party attractive to voters”.

Dr Antwi-Danso also criticise the lack of progress on the unity talks among Nkrumahists. He is now seen by the Patriots as one who can unite the Nkrumahists party under the CPP umbrella and mount a very serious challenge to the NPP and NDC monopoly of power in Ghana.

Ghanaians are looking to the CPP to present to them credible alternative policies for government. The Ghanaian people are ready to give the CPP the opportunity to lead the country under a formidable leader. They want the CPP into government to address the high incidence of poverty among the majority of Ghanaians. They want the CPP to address health care, education and to create jobs for all. They want an inclusive government where each and everyone are given a fair and equal opportunity based on merit and not on party alleviation or nepotism. And the Ghanaian people want to see the CPP lead by a leader who has got the skills and qualities to bring value to coperate Ghana.

For the last 10 years the Patriots never wavered in their resolve to stay in the CPP and fight to save the party that many joined as students.

For 10 years the Patriots have been fighting those who wish to destroy the CPP and criminalised Dr Nkrumah’s name.

The Patriots are determined to make the CPP the party of the people, the party of choice, and the party that gave opportunity to countless number of Ghanaians to go to school.

To the Patriots, Ghana comes before self. The Patriots have only one home and that is the CPP and Ghana.

Views expressed by the author(s) do not necessarily reflect those of GhanaHomePage.

Columnist: Jeffrey, Peter

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