Are The (NDC) Reform Boys Back?
Are The (NDC) Reform Boys Back? Website
There is some excitement within the circles of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) that some of its key, youthful and cadre gang that abandoned ship in year 2000 to form the Reform Party are heading back. They might have chalked very little success as a political party and their significance as a collective marginal, but the return of the Reform ‘boys’ will surely be a great political morale booster and enhance the party’s image, a national executive committee member told the dailyEXPRESS. Key members of the Reform Party are yet to confirm whether they are back or heading back to the NDC, but dailyEXPRESS is informed that a number of them were present at a recent high-powered forum chaired by Mr. P.V. Obeng to fine-tune the NDC’s policies and strategies for the country. The forum which took place three Fridays ago was attended by many technocrats affiliated to the NDC, former government appointees and functionaries and also senior party development and economic strategists. Present among many others were key operatives of the Reform Party including Kyeretwie Opoku (General Secretary), Mije Barnor (in charge of youth) and Sam Garbah. dailyEXPRESS has gathered from its interactions and discussions that the Reform members had for sometime indicated their willingness to rejoin the party, although Professor Mills is still the candidate. The selection of John Mahama who Party Founder Jerry Rawlings strongly campaigned for in 2004, is said to be one of the decided factors some of the Reform ‘boys’ indicated will make them consider rejoining the party. It has also been disclosed that many others including the Reform team have been ‘happy with themselves since the departure of former Chairman Obed Asamoah. A supposedly Reform ‘boy’ has been quoted on an NDC website as saying that “we are in because Obed is out and of course, we are back because of Professor Mills. We have a lot of respect for the professor and believe that he means well for this country and so we are all putting our shoulders to the wheel.” When reached by the dailyEXPRESS, Mr. Opoku, General Secretary of Reform who was in a meeting at the time will not make any comments on the matter, but there are suggestions that their participation in the NDC strategy meeting can only point to one fact- they are willing to contribute to shaping the party’s policies and manifesto because they believe in its course. The Reform ‘boys’ abandoned ship in a highly popularised manner following the declaration by then President and leader of the NDC Jerry Rawlings that he will support his Vice President John Atta Mills if he expresses interest in contesting the NDC’s Presidential Candidacy. Not oblivious of the power, influence and charisma of Jerry Rawlings the Reform boys like many others including the opposition NPP knew that nobody else could stand and contest Rawlings’ ‘chosen’ candidate. Following what became known as the Swedru declaration, the aggrieved members of the NDC, who were angered by the ‘declaration’ left the party and formed what many expected will perform creditably in the year 2000 elections, the Reform Party. But their performance could only be compared to Wereko-Brobby’s UGM and the CPP/PNC. NDC Leader Professor John Mills reportedly told the Policy meeting attended by many old and new faces that “no one person is the repository of knowledge so let us together fashion out policies that would make us reach out to as many people as possible. The new NDC government must have only one thing on its mind; to better the lot of the long suffering Ghanaians and restore hope in them so let us come out with very pragmatic policies that would do nothing but ensure the welfare of the citizenry.” He also asked the gathering to bring to bare their collective experience and expertise on the NDC’s social democracy agenda so that after voting for the party, Ghanaians would not have cause to regret having given the NDC the mandate to govern.