The outgoing Greater Accra Regional Minister, Nii Laryea Afotey-Agbo, has jumped to the defense of the Founder of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), Flt. Lt. Jerry John Rawlings, cautioning that no one should blame him for the embarrassing defeat the party suffered in the general election.
He said former President Rawlings has done enough to help the NDC retain power but most of his advice was ignored.
Speaking in an interview via phone yesterday, Nii Afotey-Agbo wondered why any national executive member of the NDC could point an accusing finger at Flt. Lt. Rawlings.
“What has he done wrong? When he gives wise counsel and you decide to ignore him, when they insult him and nobody defends him, how do you blame him for causing our defeat?”
Asked why the founder did not campaign for the NDC, Nii Afotey-Agbo, who is also the Member of Parliament for Kpone-Katamanso, said Flt. Lt. Rawlings may have his own reasons for not partaking.
Some party executives including the Greater Accra Regional Organiser of the NDC, Anthony Nukpenu, in the aftermath of the NDC’s defeat accused the founder of aiding their defeat – the worst in the party’s history.
Mr. Nukpenu accused the founder of overtly supporting the then opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) by always describing his own party as corrupt and insensitive towards the plight of the people.
“We as a party have a founder in the person of Jerry John Rawlings and as party members we felt he should be a protective cover for the party and the government, but he rather chose to arm the opposition against us.
“The NPP got to our heels by campaigning against us heavily on this so called corruption perception and anytime they made that claim they claimed that the founder of the NDC is the one who said the president is the most corrupt person and his appointees are very corrupt so they should be voted out,” Mr. Nukpenu claimed.
However, Nii Afotey-Agbo, who is also a close confidant and a former bodyguard of Flt. Lt. Rawlings, told this paper that the critics of the founder were far from reality.
He said if the party’s hierarchy at the national executives at the regional and constituency levels had listened to the grassroots and done what was right the party would not have found itself in the current situation.
He further stated that some district chief executives showed lackadaisical attitude towards the electioneering campaign by either not supporting their parliamentary candidates or declining to open up to their people whilst in office.
By Ian Motey