NDC to vet all aspirants at Accra headquarters

The National Democratic Congress (NDC) will vet all aspirants at the party’s headquarters in Accra contrary to previous years where the vetting was held at the various constituencies, regional and national offices.

This means President John Mahama and over 600 parliamentary aspirants would be trooping to the party’s headquarters in the coming weeks to face executives of the party’s election committee.

On august 27, the NDC opened nominations for parliamentary and presidential aspirants. Interested members had 14 days to pick and submit their forms.

As of Thursday September 10, all regions had closed nominations except the Ashanti region.

The region could not start the process by the given date due to an ongoing registration of members as part of the introduction of an inclusive franchise system.

Closing date has therefore been extended to September 17 in the Ashanti region. A total of 689 aspirants have submitted their forms out of which only 56 were females.

The northern region had the highest nominations of 120,  followed by the Greater Accra with 110, Volta region 97, Eastern region 81, the Central  and Brong Ahafo regions had  66 nominations each, Western region 69, Upper East 44, and 35 nominations filed in the Upper West region where Minister Of Chieftaincy and Culture, Dr Seidu Danaa filed his nomination.

19 of the aspirants some of whom are incumbent MPs are going unopposed.

Meanwhile, some big names like the Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Ebo Barton Oduro and Dr. Benjamin Kumbour are not contesting. The presidential slot according to the party was only contested by President John Dramani Mahama.

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In an interview with TV3 News, General Secretary of the party Johnson Asiedu Nketia said all aspirants including incumbent MPs and the president are expected to be vetted as a sign of the party’s commitment to deepening democracy.

He said “this year we’d do a one stop shop vetting. That is we would deploy teams to the various regions and then we would invite the respective constituency executives, and respective regional executives and the national team that goes would join them and we’d do the vetting.”

“The party gave fourteen days within which nominations should be filed. You could file any day out of the fourteen days. If you couldn’t file how are you going to file with the electoral commission that would give only three days?

“We know of presidential candidates who found themselves in similar circumstances before the 2012 elections. The Electoral Commission did not look at the status of the persons involved; they applied the law which we also applied.”

The parliamentary and presidential primaries have been slated for November 7, 2015.

By 3news.com|Ghana