The main opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) has expressed dismay with what it describes as some misguided reactions to the decision by the Functional Executive Committee (FEC) of the party to disqualify Michael Nii Yarboi Annan from contesting the party’s parliamentary primary in the Odododiodio Constituency.
According to the NDC, “these misguided reactions are being fueled by certain false narratives and misconceptions about the basis of the decision of the party to disqualify the said aspirant”.
But leadership of the party in a statement issued on Monday, 4 December 2023, has clarified that the decision to “disqualify the said aspirant was taken by FEC, acting on the findings and recommendations of the Special Committee that was set up to investigate the matter. This followed consultations with the Political Committee of the party”.
The party noted that the full report of the Special Committee, chaired by Rt Hon Edward Doe Adjaho, which conducted investigations into the eligibility of Michael Nii Yarboi Annan and the violence that occurred during the vetting of Parliamentary Aspirants for the Odododiodio Constituency on October 13, 2023, indicated that on the issue of the eligibility of Mr Annan, the committee made a number of key findings.
According to the report, it was discovered that Mr Annan “was formerly a member of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) who contested and lost the NPP parliamentary primary in the Odododiodio Constituency in September 2019.
“During interactions with the constituency executives, a few of them expressed dissatisfaction with an ex-NPP member like Mr Annan being allowed to contest in the NDC parliamentary primary, when he doesn’t meet the mandatory four-year membership requirement.”
It was also found out that Mr Annan had “financially supported the election campaign of most of the constituency executives during the 2022 constituency elections, including some of the executives who are now opposed to him” and had further” financially supported a number of NDC party activities in the Odododiodio constituency with the endorsement of the Member of Parliament and members of the Constituency Executive Committee”.
The report further revealed that: “Despite Mr Annan’s claim of joining the NDC in 2019, evidence was adduced to show that he was still publicly associating with the NPP after 2019,” including “a poster with the face of Mr Annan, advertising a political discussion on a programme known as "The Voice" (which is an NPP programme) to take place on July 27, 2020, in which he was described as “a security analyst and member of the NPP,” and spoke on behalf of the NPP,” among other findings by the Committee.
The party, therefore, intimated that “considering the overwhelming evidence presented, the Special Committee is unable to endorse Mr Michael Nii Yarboi Annan's qualification to contest the parliamentary primaries in the Odododiodio constituency based on article 41(8)(b) of the NDC Constitution, which provides that, “a member must be an active member of the party at the constituency level for the four years immediately preceding the date of filing nominations”.