A group within the National Democratic Congress (NDC) calling itself ‘Team Avea’ in the Bongo Constituency of the Upper East region is unhappy about some internal problems that can stifle the electoral fortunes of the party if not resolved amicably.
Team Avea is a group of stanch NDC supporters in the Bongo constituency that supported the parliamentary bid of former Upper East and West regional Minister, Prof. Avea Nsoh who unfortunately lost among other five Candidates to the current Member of Parliament, Edward Bawa in the 2016 parliamentary primaries.
In a press conference addressed by Prosper Atanga in Bongo, ‘Team Avea’ lamented that their members have been humiliated by the constituency executives since their candidate lost the elections. According to the group, there have been several instances their members have been frustrated by allies of the MP citing how most of them were unfairly removed without reasons and letters in the recent branch and constituency executives’ elections.
“Team Avea has declined numerous calls to enter the upcoming parliamentary aspirant race in order to express our disquiet about processes leading to the current primaries of the party in the Bongo Constituency. The NDC party is founded on the core values of social democracy, probity and accountability however, there is glaring abuse of these very principles in 2015 and 2018 during branch and constituency elections “they said
They added that “in both instances, we followed due processes to ensure transparency but to no avail .the situation in Bongo and similar occurrences elsewhere across the country were partly to blame for our defeat in 2016’’.
The Group claims that their concerns were written and copied to the rank and file of the party for redress but were not addressed. “Prof. Avea Nsoh personally appealed in writing to the constituency, the regional and national levels for redress, unfortunately, the approach to resolving the issues were unsatisfactory and to say the least very provocative. You may recall that during the same period, several prospective candidates were disqualified without just cause .most of these candidates resorted to court actions after several appeals did not yield the appropriate peaceful approach to the nagging issues…a proposal by the court to resolve the issues internally was also treated with contempt for reasons known to leadership”
Announcing reasons for their decision not to contest in the Parliamentary Primaries for 2019, the Group said that “0ur motivation for withdrawal from the contest is motivated by the uneven playing field created by irregularities associated with branch and constituency elections.
However, Team Avea urging delegates to make a reasoned decision in the choice of any of the two Candidates, Edward Bawa and Rainer Akumperigya while calling on Constituency, Zonal ,Ward and Branch Executives not to interfere in the elections and provide a level playing ground for both aspirants. Meanwhile, the Group has not declared support for none of the aspiring Candidates.
Bongo has since 1992 been a safe electoral haven for the NDC until recent fractions sprouting out because of unresolved grievances about the incumbent MP, Edward Bawa and a chunk of the party members. The decision by the current DCE for the district, Peter Ayinbisa to contest the elections has also made the chances of the NDC unpredictable in the 2020 general elections because of his large following and influence.