Special C’ttee Disqualifies Defected NPP Man
…For Odododiodio NDC Primaries
The Anchor is learning that the special committee, put together by the Functional Executive Committee (FEC) of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), has disqualified Michael Nii Yarboi Annan, a parliamentary aspirant in the Odododiodio Constituency in the Greater Accra Region.
At press time yesterday, this paper’s information is that the special committee’s preliminary findings is pointing to the fact that the aspirant, who defected from the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) in 2021 to join the NDC, should not have been cleared to contest the primaries.
This was after the special committee, led by Edward Doe Adjaho, a former Speaker of the Parliament, had met with the three aspirants on two different occasions.
Other members of the committee, like Dr. Samuel Sarpong – National Vice Chairman, NDC; George Loh – Deputy, Director Legal, NDC; Obuobia Darko-Opoku – Deputy Director of Communications, NDC, and Peter Lanchene Toobu – MP for Wa West Constituency, were said to have been alarmed having listened to the aspirants.
According to this paper’s information, the committee felt that allowing the aspirant to go ahead and contest will set a bad precedent for the party.
The special committee was tasked to investigate an appeal process that has been filed regarding Michael Nii Yarboi Annan’s illegibility, following the recent violence that occurred at the NDC’s Greater Accra Regional Office during the vetting of aspirants.
Allegations are that, the embattled aspirant’s membership card has been forged by his sponsors.
According to some supporters of the party, the decision by party executives to smuggle Nii Yarboi Annan into the race, despite petitions against his candidacy, smacks of betrayal.
They warned that failure by the party to reverse the injustice being perpetuated, they will resort to legal action for remedy, because the grassroots will not sit aloof for anyone to impose a stranger on them as the parliamentary candidate for the 2024 election, just because the has a deep pocket.
Touching on the issue, the supporters told The Anchor why Yarboi Annan, a diehard member of governing New Patriotic Party (NPP),who only defected to join the NDC in 2021, barely two and half years ago, is not eligible to contest the primaries, per the NDC’s rules and regulations.
He is said not to have met the criteria set by the opposition party, especially the number of years he had been an active member of the party.
Per the NDC guidelines for the primaries, Michael Nii Yarboi Annan would have been eligible if he had joined the NDC in 2018.
Nii Annan is still NPP
In a series of petitions filed against the aspirant, the petitioners explained that Mr. Nii Yarboi Annan is still a member of the NPP by virtue of that party’s constitution.
They cited, for example, the excerpts of the NPP Constitution, which state that, a member of the party ceases to be a member by writing and signing a letter addressed to his or her constituency chairperson by way of declaration of his intention and surrendering his or her membership card.
Interestingly, however, the petitioners said, the embattled NPP defector failed to comply with these laws, as captured in the NPP’s Constitution, which implies that Nii Yarboi Annan is still a member of that party.
One of the petitions, addressed to the Greater Accra Regional Chairman of NDC, dated 22nd August, 2023, and filed by one Jacob Akuffo, noted that the action of Mr. Yarboi Annan is in contradiction of the laws of the NDC.
It stated: “It is a fact that Michael Nii Yarboi Annan defected from the New Patriotic Party (NPP) to the NDC as he claims. It is also a fact that the laws of the NDC is clear on who is eligible to register as a member of the party per the above stated laws.”
The petitioner said, “Article 3 (6) (1) of NPP Constitution enunciates that; ‘A member shall cease to be a member of by writing and signing a letter addressed to his or her constituency chairperson, declaring his or her intention to cease to be a member, and forthwith surrendering his or her membership card’.”
The petitioner stressed that, “the texts are unambiguous, but gives a clear understanding.” According to him, “Nii Yarboi Annan is not a qualified member of the NDC based on the above-mentioned relevant authorities.”
He, therefore, called on the regional leadership to promptly remove Michael Nii Yarboi Annan as a member of the party and however warned that he would be forced to seek remedy in the court of law, failure by the party to act on his petition.
“Since he does not satisfy the NDC’s condition for membership, I respectfully ask that Michael Nii Yarboi Annan be promptly removed as a member of the party. I have no choice but to seek remedy in a court of law if this matter is not resolved in accordance with party laws,” the petitioner cautioned.
Meanwhile, some grassroots told this paper that, since the embattled NPP man defected to the NDC, the rank and file have not known peace, due to division among members at the branch, ward and the constituency.
Venting out their spleen, they told The Anchor that the recent violent disturbances that broke out at the party’s Greater Accra Regional office during vetting of the aspirants could have been avoided, if the constituency and regional executives had followed the laid down rules and regulations of the party.
For many, the happenings within the constituency, where greed and personal interest have taken a center stage, showed the party is not ready to retain the Odododiodio seat in the next election.
The defector NPP man joined the NDC after he contested the Odododiodio primaries on the ticket of NPP in 2020, but miserably lost to the Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Premix Fuel Company, Nii Lante Bannerman.
In that election, Nii Lante Bannerman polled 543 votes, representing 64.2 per cent, while Nii Yarboi Annan had 220 votes, representing 26.0 per cent. This forced him to tacitly sneak into NDC folks, after enjoying all the goodies in the first term of Akufo-Addo administration.
The NDC’s FEC has tasked the special committee to investigate an appeal process that has been filed, regarding Michael Nii Yarboi Annan’s illegibility.
The special committee is made up of the following members: Edward Doe Adjaho – Former Speaker of the Parliament of the Republic of Ghana; Dr. Samuel Sarpong – National Vice Chairman, NDC; George Loh – Deputy, Director Legal, NDC; Obuobia Darko-Opoku – Deputy Director of Communications, NDC and Peter Lanchene Toobu – MP for Wa West Constituency.
In the meantime, all processes relative to the party’s parliamentary primary in the Odododiodio Constituency have been put on hold, pending the outcome of the investigations by the Special Committee.