Story by: Ishmael Barfi
The race for the General Secretary of the ruling party, the New Patriotic Party (NPP) has become competitive as former Member of Parliament for Suhum Constituency, Hon. Fredrick Opare-Ansah has officially declared his intention to contest for the position when the party opens nominations later this year.
According to the four time Member of Parliament (MP) for Suhum Constituency in the Eastern region, the party crucially need a unifier, result-oriented General Secretary and not a destructor.
To him, his intention to contest is a call to duty; a call to help drive the NPP further towards achieving its vision to remain in the service of the nation as the ruling Party.
Also a call to take the NPP back to the electorate to seek the support of Ghanaians to give the party the opportunity to consolidate the unprecedented developmental policies that the Nana led NPP government has initiated.
Hon. Fredrick Opare Ansah made these profound statements at his official Declaration of Intent on Saturday, 25 March, 2022 at Akroma Plaza Hotel situated at the heart of oil city, Takoradi in the Western Region.
The official ‘Declaration of Intent’ organised by Friends of Opare-Ansah (FOA) under the theme: restoring the grassroots faith in breaking the eight and beyond” saw former Members of Parliament joining and pledging their unflinching support to Hon. Opare-Ansah intention to contest the General Secretary of party later this year.
Speaking at the event, Hon. Fredrick Opare-Ansah explained that, he stand for quality political leadership and the use of political democratic processes in the selection of such leaders.
“I believe the NPP as a party, and each of us as individual members, has a duty to project politics and democratization as the process of choice for Ghana to select its leaders”, he admonished.
The people of Ghana he stressed should have confidence that the political democratic process has a self-correcting mechanism and always yields to the will of the people.
Answering a question posed to him by the President of Friends for Opare-Ansah, Miss. Ewuradjoa as to whether he would contest the General Secretary position of party when nominations are open, he boldly responded yes, he would.
Saying “On this note I am happy to inform you and everyone here, and those of you who have joined us through various media channels that, after due consultations, sober reflections and a deep consideration of the question, I have decided to contest for the position of General Secretary of the New Patriotic Party when nominations open for elections later this year”.
Giving reasons why he is the best choice for the position, the former Deputy Minister for Communications in Kufour era revealed that his politics are largely driven by the principle of open-thinking.
In the context of internal party elections at whatever level, he indicated that, he will ensure the creation of a level playing field for all aspiring parties and as well as fully support whoever emerges as the choice of the Electoral College in the discharge of their responsibilities.
Charging grassroots present at the event, he emphasized that he brings on board a new era of tolerance, inclusiveness and openness.
“Building unity at all levels of the Party has been my hallmark and that is how I was able to break the cycle of a single term for Suhum MPs and to have been able to consolidate the Suhum seat for the NPP”, he noted.
Adding that, the entire membership of the party when properly administered can be, not just a tool for winning political power but, also a very powerful tool for economic bargain.
To him, the party at this crucial time needs someone who is very fair but firm person and he comes into the contest on his own strength and not to further the interest of any particular group within the Party.
“It is my fervent hope, that the wider membership of the Party will accept me for this and allow me to represent their interests”.
Touching on his vision for members of the party, Hon. Fredrick Opare-Ansah pointed out that, he would ensure that membership cards do not only give one simple welfare benefits but can even double as a discount card or even a payment card and also be used very much like a BJs or COSTCO membership card in the USA, or a PALACE or MELCOM membership card in Ghana.
Furthermore, the existing Call Centre of the Party will be retooled and repurposed to receive feedback from the base of the Party and to engage the base of the party to get their input in driving support for Government policies.
The issues of welfare of party members he noted will receive due attention under his tenure in office as the General Secretary of the party.
However, he reiterated that, longevity of the Party in government is synonymous to sustainable equitable welfare policy development and implementation.
His rich experience in legislative matters he touted will come to bear in supporting the work of the Constitutional and Legal Committee of the National Council of the Party.
With regards to the strengthening of the relationship between the Members of Parliament and the party, he stated that, his knowledge of parliamentary work will be brought to bear on the new relationship that will be forged with the parliamentary group to deepen the understanding of the work of MPs by party folk and to improve upon the sensitivity and response MPs give to their respective constituency parties.
This he believes will reduce the mistrust that usually develops among the various interest groups in the constituencies and hopefully leady to a lesser attrition rate for our caucus.
Former Members of Parliament present at the official launch of Opare-Ansah Declaration of Intent was Joe Mensah, former MP for Kwesimintim, Hon. Ransford Agyepong, former MP for Suhum, Hon. Ama Sey, Former MP for Akwatia, Hon. Abraham Odoom, former MP for Twifo-Atimokwa, Dr. Mark Assibey-Yeboah, former MP for New Juaben South.