Filling fee: Petition can’t stop us – Asiedu Nketia
The General Secretary of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Johnson Asiedu Nketia said Monday that the party has not been served the petition calling for a relook of GH¢400,000 filling being charged flagbearer aspirants.
“We have heard complaints from some of the candidates and some other concerned members of the party. We have also heard about a petition that I’m told is circulating,” he told Starr News’ Eric Egbeta.
“We want to indicate,” he continued “that at the level of the national executives we have not seen that petition yet. And so we are unable to act or restrain our action based on a petition that is circulating somewhere in the media.”
Mr Nketia’s comments come on the back of reports that nine of the aspirants seeking to lead the NDC in the 2020 elections wrote to the Council of Elders of the party to intervene in the hefty GH¢400,000 being charged as filing fee by the party executives.
The aspirants including Dr. Ekwow Spio-Garbrah and Alban Bagbin say the amount is unreasonable blaming Mr. Nketia of skewing the contest in favour of an individual in the race.
Mr. Nketia was on record to have declared his support for the candidature of former President John Mahama in the race.
The petition to the Elders said the amount does not reflect the social democratic ideals of the party and must be reviewed.
“We oppose these fees on the grounds that they call the Party’s fundamental commitment to social democracy into question. Their mere publication has brought the Party into negative controversy. As a social democratic Party NDC must always be committed to breaking down class and social barriers and building a more inclusive politics and society”
“Our mission is to empower those currently marginalized by our elitist social institutions and bring them into public life in ways that strengthen productivity and solidarity, thereby increasing wealth for all.”
“The imposition by NEC of filing fees that would exclude the vast majority of Party members from offering themselves for office is unacceptable to us and (from the public outrage exhibited over the last 24 hours) to Party activists and citizens in general. As regards precedent we observe that these fees are entirely out of line with the Party’s own historical practice,” said the petition.
Meanwhile, some members of the NDC from the Asawase constituency in Ashanti region have picked presidential nomination forms for former President John Mahama.
It means the individuals paid the GH¢20, 000 non-refundable fee for the forms as announced by ¢the party last week.
It comes as some supporters of the party converge at the Cantonment office of the former President to make donations to enable him meet the GH¢400,000 filing fee after an open donation appeal by the Mahama campaign team.
There are reports that Members of Parliament who have declared support for the candidature of the former President have raised over GH¢600,000 for him.