Following the controversy that surrounded the May 13 National Democratic Congress (NDC) parliamentary primaries in the Ketu North constituency, leadership of the party in the Volta region has taken a decisive action to reconcile all aggrieved parties.
Mr Mawutor Agbavitor, the Volta regional chairman of the NDC who spearheaded the reconciliation process told News Ghana that the reconciliation process became necessary to foster unity among all members of the party in the constituency and “to get everyone on board for the big task ahead of the party in the 2024 general elections.”
“We have embarked on this reconciliation exercise in a bid to iron out all differences in the rank and file of the party in Ketu North, especially between our parliamentary candidate hopefuls and their supporters who in the aftermath of the primary on May 13, have raised some concerns – we have done this because the primaries are over and the party needs everyone to unite and come on board towards victory for the NDC in the upcoming 2024 general elections,” Mr Agbavitor explained.
He called on all members of the party in the constituency especially Mr Edem Agbana and Mr John Adanu the two leading contenders in the controversial primary to pull together and work in unison for the forward march of the party in the constituency.
Dr James Klutse Avedzi, incumbent Member of Parliament (MP) for the constituency who was part of the reconciliation meeting, in an interview with News Ghana said he was happy that the aggrieved parties have come together “to smoke the peace pipe” and have agreed to put the past behind them and to collaborate towards a resounding victory for the NDC in the constituency and the rest of the Volta region in 2024.
Mr Edem Agbana and Mr John Adanu the two contenders in the primary, both pleged thier commitment to working hand in hand and to unite all their supports and party faithful in the constituency towards victory for the NDC in the 2024 general elections.
The Electoral Commission (EC) at the end of the polls in the Ketu North constituency on May 13 2023, initially declared Mr Eden Agbana the winner by a single vote in the contest as he secured 360 votes as against 359 by Mr John Adanu.
But upon two recounts of the ballots requested by an agent of Mr John Adanu, the EC discovered three ballot papers that were not stamped with two of the three unstamped ballots cast in favour of Mr Edem Agbana whiles one unstamped ballot was cast in favour of Mr John Adanu.
The removal of the unstamped ballots from the votes of the two leading candidates left the two with 358 valid votes each, leading to confusion at the polling grounds and hot verbal exchanges between supporters of the two candidates.
However, following a crunch meeting between the party’s Functional Executive Committee (FEC) and the two leading candidates, the party on May 16, 2023, announced Mr Edem Agbana as the duly elected NDC parliamentary candidate for Ketu North.
The Functional Executive Committee announced after the declaration that it took that decision based on the fact that the unstamped ballot papers which were rejected by the EC, bore the same serial numbers as captured in the EC’s own records.
This however did not go down well with some of the party faithful in the constituency who have accused the party leadership of not following due process in their decision.
The reconciliation meeting was attended by some of the party’s regional, national and constituency executives as well as some party stalwarts and stakeholders.
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