Mr Stephen Ashitey Adjei, an Executive Member of the Tema East Constituency wing of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), is calling for a paradigm shift in the way his party elects Parliamentary Candidates for elections.
“As I speak right now, there are many NDC MPs in Parliament, who have not spoken up even once on the floor of Parliament since they were elected into the August House.
“If we had had internal party debates for aspirants before they were elected, I do not think that delegates would have elected such speechless people to go to Parliament and face MPs from a party like the NPP, who really know how to talk”.
In a statement copied to the Ghana News Agency, in Accra on Tuesday, Mr. Ashitey Adjei, who is popularly known as “Moshake” prescribed the addition of debates in the process of selecting aspirants saying the absence of the platform for assessing the debating capabilities of aspirants was a crucial missing ingredient in the party’s process to elect Candidates to go and debate in Parliament.
According to him, because of the lack of oratorical activeness of many of the NDC MPs in Parliament, the NPP appeared to be having the upper hand during debates all the time.
Currently in the NDC, and much like in all other political parties in Ghana, the process of electing a Parliamentary Candidate only consists of aspirants picking forms after the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the party had issued guidelines, and then going straight ahead to campaign.
The campaign is usually in the form of aspirants meeting delegates individually or in groups to sell themselves; an arrangement that Moshake lamented, bred corruption and bribery rather than sift out the chaff for the right Candidates to be elected.
“Basically, what we have as an arrangement for electing Parliamentary Candidates at the moment is a system that encourages MP wannabes to bribe delegates for votes; this is obviously not only an NDC problem, but an NPP, CPP, PNC etc problem as well.
“I believe we need to cure this and an effective way to do this is to institute debates for the aspirants; this will serve as mock Parliamentary floors for these aspirants to show their debating skills and this way, delegates can make better informed decisions when they enter the booth to vote,” Moshake said.
He said he would be writing officially to the national leadership of the party to make his suggestion known to them and commended the Second Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Alban Sumana Kingsford Bagbin, Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu, the Deputy Minority Leader, James Klutse Avedzi, Ato Forson, MP for Ajumako-Enyan-Esiam and Dr. Oko Vanderpuiye, MP Ablekuma South among other for their good works.