The National Executive Committee (NEC) of the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) has said it will enforce to the letter, the Code of Conduct for the party's presidential and parliamentary primaries issued by the party’s National Council on July 27, 2021.
It has, therefore, warned that failure by any party executive, member or prospective aspirant to comply with the directives shall be dealt with in line with the grievance procedures stipulated in the Code of Conduct.
The national executives issued the warning after they met and cautioned the Ashanti Regional Chairman of the party, Bernard Antwi Boasiako, popularly known as Chairman Wontumi for openly endorsing one of the party’s presidential hopefuls in a video that went viral on social media.
A statement issued and signed by the NPP General Secretary, Justin Frimpong Kodua, therefore, cautioned all party executives from the national, regional and constituency levels to desist from such conduct as it was in breach of the party's Code of Conduct.
The statement quoted Section 1 (f) of the party’s Code of Conduct which stipulates: "Members, supporters, sympathisers of the party at all levels shall desist from using their public office or portfolio within or outside the party to promote the interest of any prospective presidential or parliamentary candidate in order to gain unfair political advantage,” to buttress the point.
It reminded all party executives that in line with Articles 2(3) and 2(4) of the party's Constitution, the Code of Conduct sought to foster the spirit of healthy intra-party contest by guaranteeing equal opportunity for all stakeholders.
"In obedience to the party's Constitution and the Code of Conduct, herein, all national, regional, and constituency executives of the party are once again cautioned to refrain from either endorsing or openly campaigning for any presidential or parliamentary aspirant", the statement said.
"Equally, until the party duly opens nominations for presidential and parliamentary primaries, all prospective presidential and parliamentary aspirants are to desist from all forms of campaign activities, including mounting of billboards and holding meetings with party executives as that would be in breach of the Code of Conduct", it stated.
The statement said the institution of the disciplinary measures was to avert the menace of internal party wrangling, and factionalism which usually arose when party executives openly declared support for aspirants, thereby dividing the party front in the lead-up to the general election.
"It is also intended to avoid the repetition of the electoral misfortunes of our tradition in the 1979 and 2008 general elections which were linked to party officials openly leading the campaign of aspirants," it stated further.
"There is no gainsaying that the NPP's quest to win a historic third consecutive general election (breaking the eight) cannot be achieved if party executives are allowed to flagrantly disregard directives meant to achieve the conduct of free and fair presidential and parliamentary elections, " it said .