The National Democrats, a group said to be within the National Democratic Congress, is calling on the leadership of the party to trigger processes to get rid of former President John Dramani Mahama as the party’s flagbearer for the December general elections, as a result of the Airbus bribery scandal hanging around his neck.
According to the group, which is domiciled in the Volta Region, “the Airbus bribery scandal is the latest in a long litany of corruption scandals that has surrounded our flagbearer and candidate for the forthcoming 2020 presidential elections.”
Mr Mahama, in the opinion of the group, “is a naked liability” to the NDC, adding that marketing him in the 2020 campaign will be a difficult task.
A statement signed by Samuel Kwashi Ganuvi, convener of the group, said: “Frankly, the miasma of corruption, graft, venality and impropriety that seems to follow John Mahama renders him an unfit candidate to run on an NDC ticket.
“We have had enough. The scandals in which he has been implicated, from his time as Vice-President to his time as President, make him a liability.”
The group fears that Mahama’s candidature as flagbearer will adversely affect the NDC’s fortunes in the 2020 general elections.
It added that his character as a greedy leader was confirmed when he once accepted a gift of a Ford Expedition from a Burkinabe businessman who was bidding for a road contract.
“We lost the 2016 election and given the mud that had stuck to Mahama, it is not surprising. He was damaged goods and it was an insult to the intelligence of the Ghanaian electorate to expect them to elect a candidate whose presidency was plagued with questions concerning his integrity,” the group added.
The group noted that because John Mahama is directly implicated in the Airbus bribery scandal, it will be an “absolute folly” for him to be maintained by the party as the presidential candidate.
Meanwhile, a group calling itself Forum for Accountability and Development of Sefwi has petitioned the President to set up a commission of inquiry to look into the procurement of all military equipment by the government from 2009 to 2015.
According to the group, the latest international corporate scandal in the matter of UK’s Serious Fraud Office (SFO) Vrs AIRBUS SE “appears to ring a bell of disturbing dimensions in terms of how military equipment are procured to support operations of the Ghana Armed Forces.”
The petition, which was signed by Dawda Eric, the general secretary of the group, says corruption, which has become a cancerous tumor on the country, should not be allowed to fester, hence the call for investigations.
According to the petitioners, it is on record that the late President Atta Mills had had cause to complain about how military equipment, including aircraft, were procured in the country during his tenure of office.
They added that the purchase of the infamous Embraer 190, which compelled him to set up a special committee to investigate the entire transaction, should offer enough justification for such an inquiry.
“We believe that the Airbus scandal provides your high office the opportunity to constitute an independent commission of inquiry to look into every single military equipment procured in 2009-2015 in order to get a concrete recommendation that would help cure the loopholes that have been created as a result of seeming lack of due diligence on the part of the Ghana Armed Forces Council whose mandates are clearly stated in Armed Forces Council Act, 1962 (Act 105),” the petitioners said.
“We are verily aware and believe same to be true that, your government having won the 2016 election on a campaign of a spirited fight against any form of corruption would put this request under a consideration for the goodness of this country,” it added.
Source: Daily Statesman