Ghana President names poll running mateBy FRANCIS KOKUTSE and XINHUA | Wednesday, September 19 2012 at 16:59
Ghana's President John Dramani Mahama has officially named his deputy Paa Kwesi Bekoe Amissah-Arthur as his running mate in the December election.
Announcing his decision on Tuesday to party faithful at the National Theatre in Accra, President Mahama said his deputy would serve as an important anchor to the economic policies of the government.
"He will give us the necessary support needed to continue in efforts to transform Ghana from a lower Middle Income Country (MIC) to a full MIC," he declared.
The President assured supporters that, having completed the party's ticket with the nomination of his running mate, the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) was "ready for a gargantuan victory at the 2012 polls".
Apart from serving as a Special Assistant to then Secretary for Finance and Economic Planning during the most turbulent days of Ghana's economy in the early 1980s, Mr Amissah Arthur also served as an under Secretary and later deputy minister for Finance and Economic Planning until 1997 in the previous NDC government led by party founder Jerry John Rawlings.
In another development, President Mahama openly apologised on behalf of some officials of NDC who insulted the Moderator of the Presbyterian Church of Ghana, Prof Emmanuel Martey, for daring to contribute to a national debate on whether or not, the Electoral Commission should create 45 new constituencies with just three months to the polls.
The main opposition party, the New Patriotic Party, had accused NDC of gerrymandering because the government had created new districts, which forced EC to propose the new constituencies.
Prof Martey was just one of the many people who have asked the EC to postpone the creation of the new constituencies.
But some officials felt offended and said, the Church should stay out of politics.
One NDC officials, the chief executive of the Ghana Free Zones Board, Mr Kwadwo Twum-Boafo, went to the extent of denouncing his membership of the Presbyterian Church.
But, President Mahama apologised to the church and appealed to all “to cease fire and let peace prevail”.
He has appealed to the aggrieved parties to allow Parliament, the Judiciary and the EC to consider the issue.
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Beyond the ballot