Sep 28, 2012

NDC backtracks: John Mahama to join IEA debates

The ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) has rescinded its decision never to allow President John Dramani Mahama to attend the IEA’s evening encounter with presidential candidates and debates. 

The ruling party in a meeting with officials of IEA said President Mahama has now agreed to participate in the evening encounters contrary to their previous stance.

The IEA has now scheduled October 9 for President Mahama to face the nation and that will be the first time a sitting president is submitting to such encounters.

The General Secretary of the ruling party, Johnson Asiedu Nketia, in a meeting with IEA officials at the NDC headquarters on Friday said: “He [Mahama] has requested me to indicate to you his preparedness to participate in the evening encounters and subsequent debate.]

The leader of the IEA delegation Esi Sutherland told Citi News it is a welcoming news and they are “extremely pleased and it is something that we cherish and we’ll make it possible to ensure he participates.”

It will be recalled that the Propaganda Secretary of the NDC, Richard Quashigah, in a statement during the era of President John Evans Atta Mills affirmed the party’s decision not to participate in the IEA. 

“The NDC government has previously drawn the IEA’s attention to the fact that no sitting president or vice president in the 4th Republic has participated in these debates. It is the party’s position to uphold that convention. The NDC wishes the IEA well and will continue to collaborate with it in other matters of mutual interest,” the statement said.