The campaign team of the Convention People’s Party (CPP) worked hard in the run-up to the December 7, 2016 elections but the result is a case of “man proposes, God disposes’’ the Presidential candidate of the party, Mr Ivor Kobina Greenstreet, has said.
“We toured the country on two occasions and visited most constituencies nationwide and had many dynamic and hard- working parliamentary candidates, with a positive campaign message of a new covenant or “Apamfoforo” seeking change by unseating the National Democratic Congress (NDC) but blocking the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and obtaining the change votes. The desire for change went to the largest opposition party because probably Ghanaians thought the NPP was a safer bet for change now,” he told the Daily Graphic.
The CPP garnered 25,395 votes representing 0.24 per cent of the valid vote cast against 5,716,026 votes which is 53.85 per cent of that of the President-elect, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo of the NPP and 4,713,277 votes, representing 44.40 per cent of his closest contender, President John Dramani Mahama of the NDC.
The CPP’s performance in 2016 is slightly higher than the 20,109 votes representing 0.18 per cent it obtained in 2012.
In his first post-election interview, Mr Greenstreet said one of the main challenges the campaign faced was the inability to provide more logistics at the grassroots, especially in the last two days.
“We feel that our financial projections for the campaign were dislodged by the exorbitant and unexpected high filing fees the Electoral Commission(EC) charged, “he stated.
The EC, on September 8, 2016, announced an increase in the filing fee for presidential candidates from GH¢5,000 in 2012 to GH¢50,000 and that for parliamentary candidates from GH¢1,000 in 2012 to GH¢10,000 in this year’s elections.
With those figures in mind, Mr Greenstreet said the party was “predicting 100 per cent increase to GH¢ 2,000 or at most GH¢ 2,500 but for it to be increased to 1000 per cent to GH¢10,000, we were completely taken off balance.”
He said the situation affected the party’s budget for radio and television advertising hence the team had to restrict itself to a few television stations.
Mr Greenstreet explained that because they had no knowledge that the filing fees were going to be so high they had already printed posters and their parliamentary candidates had started campaigning. It was, therefore, difficult for them to suddenly turn round and say because the fees were high they couldn’t pay. That, he said, would have been unfair.
According to him, the party paid a little over GH¢ 2.2 million for all its parliamentary candidates.
Asked how the party managed to raise the amount for its campaign and filing fees, he said there were contributions from friends and well-meaning people.
The defeat notwithstanding, he commended for the party’s campaign teamwork which included national, regional and constituency executives as well as parliamentary candidates, saying, “even though we didn’t achieve our aim. We ran a visible and vibrant campaign. They should be proud of their effort in spite of the defeat.’’