Attempts to clandestinely remove opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) National Chairman, Paul Afoko has hit a snag as the party has run out of all options to legitimize the controversial steps taken to remove him so far, The Republic Newspaper has gathered.

Paul Afoko

Paul Afoko

Paul Afoko has been vocal about what he describes as an illegal attempt to get rid of him as the party’s national chairman.

Even though the party had provisionally tasked the party’s 1st Vice Chairman, Freddie Blay to act as National Chairman, Paul Afoko still regards himself as the party’s substantive national chairman. He states this clearly in all his public correspondence and has dragged the main opposition party to court to prove that his suspension was illegal.

He was earlier marked for an outright impeachment but the move since metamorphosed into an indefinite suspension; a punishment that Paul Afoko has challenged as being illegal because the party’s constitution forbids him being suspended for more than one month.

According to Mr. Afoko, the current leadership has blatantly ignored the constitutional process required to either suspend or remove him.

The constitution of the party stipulates that an elected official cannot be suspended for more than one month when grounds of his offence is being determined by the party’s highest decision making body-The National Council. The final decision to remove or not to remove the officer lies in a two-thirds voting of delegates, this paper can report.

But according to Paul Afoko, all these procedures have been side-stepped in a frantic attempt to oust him.

“…when suspension is invoked, it should not exceed one month Therefore the indefinite suspension of an elected officer is tantamount to a removal of that officer,” he stated in his recent press conference that has generated much public discussion.

Mr. Afoko has argued that he regarded his indefinite suspension as akin to removal from office, a move he has vowed to resist.

He charged that, the NPP hierarchy had no right to suspend him for more than one month, saying that that decision would have to be determined by a delegates’ congress. If he has to stay suspended longer, the party would have to revert to the congress for a final decision.

Article 10 of the NPP constitutions states: Whenever forty percent (40%) of the delegates that elect Constituency, Regional and National officers as the case may be, give written notice to the Constituency, Regional or National Executive as the case may be, of the demand for the removal of any elected officer he Executive Committee which receives such notice shall within one (1) week of receipt of the notice circulate such notice to all delegates affected.”
It elaborates further: “The petition for the removal of an officer shall be on stated grounds, a copy of which shall be given to the affected officer who shall be given the opportunity to be heard by a body constituted by the Executive Committee.  Within one (1) month of the circulation of such notice referred to in clause (1), the said Executive Committee shall summon an Extraordinary Delegates Conference to deliberate and decide on the matter.”

Afoko is convinced that the party’s hierarchy is resorting to all sort of illegal tactics to get him out of the picture, but he had vowed to fight the attempts to its logical conclusions in the law courts

Earlier, loyalists of the party’s flagbearer Nana Akufo Addo (believed to be at loggerheads with Paul Afoko), initiated an impeachment move against Paul Afoko, but the attempts backfired after they failed to secure the endorsement of the stipulated 40% of voting delegates.

Meanwhile, after the 40% endorsement by delegates, the party’s highest decision-making body is expected to organize an extraordinary delegates’ congress and seek a two-thirds approval for the removal of an elected officer of the party such as Paul Afoko.

It is reported that this constitutional predicament and challenge posed by the embattled Paul Afoko is mostly responsible for forcing the party leadership into organizing the surprise extraordinary delegates congress scheduled for December 19, 2015.

Besides the impasse with the National Chairman, the opposition party is facing similar issues with party Genetral Secretary, Kwabena Agyei Agyapong and a Vice Chairman of the party, Sammy Crabbe.

Even though the party has been tight-lipped about the purpose of the extraordinary general meeting, this paper has gathered from reliable sources within the NPP that the Paul Afoko situation would feature prominently in the meeting.

Exposing all what he said are clandestine ways to get rid of him, Paul Afoko has dragged the NPP to court challenging his suspension and the mode of removal.

In a move to parry speculations that the Afoko issue had cowed the NPP into organizing the extraordinary delegates’ congress, John Boadu, the National Organiser of the party, recently told Fiifi Kasapa FM Mr. Afoko would not be discussed at the congress.

“Afoko issue will not be discussed at the conference. People are getting a lot of things wrong,” he told the radio station in an interview that has raised curiosity among critics who have cited unprecedented nature of the party’s impasse with Afoko.

Critics are surprised that John Boadu would claim an event of such magnitude would not be discussed at the December congress.

The party’s article 9 (5) specifies that such congresses are only called when something unusual was needed to be discussed.

This paper has gathered that recent unfolding events in the party were a pointer to the secret agenda for the extraordinary congress.

Indeed, just about the time the extraordinary meeting was called, allegations had been leveled against Paul Afoko for being responsible for last Sunday dawn’s raid of the party’s headquarters where an arsenal of dangerous weapons was uncovered.

Source: The Republic

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