The Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) may have to organize this year’s Presidential Debate without the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC).
Kasapafmonline.com can confirm that the party shall not be part of what was expected to be a night of intellectual discourse between the NDC’s John Mahama and the main opposition New Patriotic Party’s Nana Akufo-Addo.
We can report that the party has decided it is better off having anything to do with the IEA, seen within its executive set up as a foe than an ally.
The NDC’s decision isn’t much of a surprise as it has in recent times registered its displeasure with the way the Jean Mensa-led body has ‘conducted itself’.
Recently the NDC based its intentions of ditching the debate on the premise of strengthening the state-run civic education body National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE), saying it preferred attending one organized by the latter.
This was after the NCCE announced it had plans for a “presidential dialogue” as part of its roadmap for the 2016 elections.
The IEA subtly fought back insisting the NCCE should rather expend its efforts towards what it’s statutorily mandated to do – civic education.
“My greatest concern would be to help them to educate voters on how to vote, and ensure that they’re not disenfranchised. In 2008 we had more than 3.4% of the rejected ballots. In 2012 it was 2.8%- It’s been happening and I think that the NCCE whose mandate is to educate us on our civic rights and responsibilities should focus on that,” Jean Mensah said.
That position – at this point – is turning out, is only shared by the IEA.
A party source Monday morning confirmed the party’s decision to boycott.
“We prefer to strengthen state institutions. If we don’t, the same private institutions will come back at us saying we left state institutions to rot. So we have advised ourselves.”