The man who led some Nadowli Kaleo constituents to pick nomination forms for Second Deputy Speaker of parliament Alban Bagbin, Mr David Dzawara Baya says they did that because they didn’t want Mr Bagbin to miss out of the upcoming National Democratic Congress’ (NDC) presidential primary.
Mr Dzawara, whom Mr Bagbin described as a man who once “eyed” his seat, said if they had not picked the forms on behalf of the former Majority Leader before the 5 pm deadline on Tuesday, December 4, 2018, the veteran MP would have totally lost the chance to pursue his ambition of becoming president should the NDC’s Council of Elders make a favourable intervention on a petition presented before it by some of the aspirants, including Mr Bagbin, concerning the GHS420,000 filing and nomination fees.
Apart from Mr Bagbin, as of the deadline, forms had been picked on behalf of former president John Dramani Mahama, former Chief Executive Officer of the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA) Sylvester Mensah, Mr Stephen Atubiga and former Vice-Chancellor of the University of Professional Studies, Accra (UPSA).
Mr Bagbin and eight other aspirants had expressed reservations about the amount involved as fees and petitioned the Council of Elders and the NDC’s founder Mr Jerry John Rawlings to intervene.
After learning that Mr Dzawara had led some constituents to pick the nomination forms on his behalf, Mr Bagbin rejected the gesture, adding that he was awaiting the intervention of the Council of Elders.
Justifying his action, however, Mr Dzawara told Accra-based Starr FM yesterday which was monitored by today that: “While they are waiting for the National Executive Committee to take a decision on their petition, we deemed it prudent that: ‘Look, there was a deadline for the aspirants to pick their nomination forms and the time was elapsing and our candidate Alban Bagbin was not willing to go for the forms but we said, ‘No we must go in for the forms to save time’.
“Supposing that we did not take the forms yesterday and the issues they have raised in their petition are resolved amicably today, it means that it was not going to be possible for him to contest. That was why we came in as constituents from the constituency, mobilised and then went in to pick the forms”.
Mr Dzawara said, the group was yet to meet Mr Bagbin on the matter.
“In our traditional set up, when you have to choose a chief, you look among the royals and you select the one that is strong, the one that is capable, the one that has integrity and principle; that is what Alban Bagbin carries with him. So, we know that he’s competent and is able to lead our party into 2020, so, even though he is not willing to go ahead because they have issues before the NEC, we said, ‘No, we must go ahead and pick the forms’. When those issues are resolved, being a human being, we’ll appeal to his conscience again and then he’ll go ahead and continue with the process,” he said.
Story: Franklin ASARE –DONKOH