THERE ARE strong indications that the ouster of the Minority leadership in Parliament was a unilateral decision taken by the NDC National Chairman, Johnson Asiedu Nketia.
According to impeccable NDC sources, attempts by former President John Dramani Mahama to intervene was thrown overboard by the National Chairman.
Mr. Mahama, sources say, had asked Asiedu Nketia to hold on to the decision to change the Minority leadership led by Haruna Iddrisu, MP for Tamale South, but was ignored.
This was after the National Executive Committee (NEC) had communicated its decision to stop appointments to all positions including parliamentary leadership until the party goes to congress to elect a flagbearer in May this year.
NDC insiders told DAILY GUIDE that after issuing the fiat dismissing Haruna Iddrisu and his lieutenants, the party convened a Functional Executive Committee (FEC) meeting on Tuesday where Asiedu Nketia was confronted by other FEC members for explanation on why he undertook that decision without recourse to them.
He adduced no reason, except to tell them that the letter to the Speaker was a proposal and that since it was leaked, the leadership had to stand by it.
At the meeting, it became clear that the move was a sole decision by the National Chairman with the support of the General Secretary, Fifi Kwetey, who actually penned the correspondence to the Speaker of Parliament informing him of the changes in the Minority leadership.
The FEC members pointed out that the decision was unpopular and tantamount to running one man show. The decision was greeted with furore as some NDC members called for it to be reversed.
However, NDC General Secretary, Fifi Kwetey, says the decision was final and unchangeable. He rubbished calls by Minority parliamentarians asking party leadership to withdraw the communication to Parliament that announced changes at the Minority front.
According to him, the claims that consultations were not held before the decision was taken was far from the truth.
Mr. Kwetey said all key party members were consulted before the decision to change Haruna Iddrisu and his deputy, James Klutse Avedzi, was taken.
However, the parliamentarians said no such consultation took place, indicating that they were not part of the process.
Several NDC MPs including MP for Bolgatanga East, Dominic Ayine and Tamale Central MP, Murtala Muhammed, Odododiodioo MP, Edwin Nii Lantey Vanderpuye and Zebilla MP, Cletus Avoka, have all voiced out their concerns, describing the change in leadership as undemocratic and worrying since no consultations were held with the Minority caucus.
Some NDC party supporters in Tamale South have also given the party a 24-hour ultimatum to rescind the decision or face their wrath.
But Fifi Kwetey, in a response, said the decision had been taken and would not be reversed. He said the party would proceed with the leadership changes when Parliament resumes in February.
He added that the party only had to inform Haruna Iddrisu of the decision and not consult him on his removal.
“The leadership of the party, at the highest level, has taken a decision and that is just what it is. You cannot set up a precedent where decisions by the leadership of the party are now going to be an issue of the caucus. The leadership of the party in Parliament is appointed by the leadership of the party. It is not something that is done by the caucus of the party,” Fifi Kwetey told Citi FM.
Mr. Kwetey’s letter to the Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin, on Tuesday, January 24, stated that it had decided to replace Minority Leader Haruna Iddrisu with Cassiel Ato Forson.
Other changes included Emmanuel Armah-Kofi Buah, MP for Ellembelle, who is taking over from Ketu North MP, James Klutse Avedzi, as the Deputy Minority Leader while Kwame Governs Agbodza replaces Asawase MP, Mohammed-Mubarak Muntaka as the Minority Chief Whip.
Ahmed Ibrahim and Comfort Doyoe-Ghansah, two MPs who allegedly supported Asiedu Nketia chairmanship bid, have, however, maintained their positions as First and Second Deputy Whips respectively.