The Acting Director of Elections of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), Bede Ziedeng, says per the Party’s Code of Elections two presidential hopefuls – Goosie Tanoh and Alhaji Iddrisu Nurudeen – did not qualify to vote in the Presidential Primary.
Hence, their inability to exercise their franchise in the polls on Saturday.
Speaking to the Ghana News Agency at the NDC Headquarters in Accra, Mr. Ziedeng said the Electoral College for the presidential candidate was under Article 42 (1G) of the Party’s Code of Conduct of Elections.
According the Article, the NDC’s Electoral College in Presidential Primary consists of every branch executive committee member, every constituency executive committee member, every regional executive committee member and every national executive committee member.
The rest are every member of the Party’s Parliamentary Group, 15 representatives of each external branch of the Party including the youth organiser and the women organiser representatives.
Five representatives of the Tertiary Institutions Network, two of whom are women; members of the Council of Elders at the National and Regional level, the President of the Republic, or the past presidents and past Vice Presidents, who are members of the Party; and each founding member of the Party,
Others are former ministers of state and former deputy ministers of state, former Members of Parliament, who are members of the Party; former presidential staffs, former metropolitan, municipal and district chief executives, former ambassadors and high commissioners, and former members of the Council of State, who are members of the Party.
Mr. Ziedeng said those were the people who were entitled to vote in an election to elect the Presidential Candidate of the NDC.
“For that matter if any of the presidential aspirants does not qualify under this regulation to participate in the election he or she may certainly contest an election but does not have a vote in that particular election,” he said.
He said both Mr Tanoh and Alhaji Nurudeen had qualified under the guidelines of the NDC to contest the elections but under the same guidelines they do not qualify to vote.
With regards to another Presidential hopeful, Professor Joshua Alabi’s inability to locate his name on the register of delegates, which was later inserted for him to allow him to vote;
Mr. Zeideng said Prof Alabi, as a former Member of Parliament and a former minister, qualifies to be a delegate to vote in the election.
He said the omission of his name was an over sight and that the registers were prepared from the constituency levels and forwarded to the national level.
Mr. Ziedeng noted that it was not a peculiar case to Prof Alabi alone, but there were others whose names were also accidentally omitted due to oversight.
“We had as many as 275 registers coming into the polls, and as a matter of fact, it was difficult to go through every single register to ensure that people’s names were properly captured,” Mr Ziedeng said.
He said in future the Party would pay serious attention to the preparation of the register and would also ensure that there was a time frame for its exhibition to enable delegates to cross-check for their names.