THE newly elected presidential candidate of the People’s National Convention (PNC), Hassan Ayariga has stated categorically that he will disregard the summary dismissal of the two leading members of the party and re-admit them if the victims wish to return.
I will admit Dr. Somtim Togiga and Mr Bernard Bame-Ime back to the PNC if they re-apply, Mr Ayariga told journalists in Sunyani in an interview yesterday.
The two personalities were dismissed by the PNC congress, the highest decision making body of the party, after its National Executive Committee (Somtim) (NEC) brought a resolution to that effect which was endorsed by congress on Saturday night.
According to NEC, they were dismissed because “they and their agents and associates have consistently defiled the collective decisions of the party and disregarded the internal organs, refused to submit to arbitration, and ignored several decisions of the law courts of Ghana”.
Part of resolution read, the two, Dr Somtim Tobiga – and Mr Bernard Bame-Ime have consistently perpetrated activities that have brought the party into disrepute, including seizing, by force, the party headquarters, locking out of the party’s legitimate officers and staff, unlawfully installing an interim management committee, and actions unwarranted and unrecognized by the constitution of the PNC’.
Mr Ayariga however noted that although he respected the position taken by congress per the resolution presented to it by NEC, he believed that was not the best way forward to unite the party.
According to the PNC flagbearer, he still believed that Dr Tobiga and his followers have a role to play in his administration and would therefore welcome them.
He was of the view that a new mode of dialogue should be open where all and sundry should address issues affecting the party in a transparent and sincere manner.
‘The problem is that when you do not do the right thing you end up doing the wrong thing’, he said.
Mr Ayariga noted that although Dr Tobiga is human and may have his faults or committed mistakes in correcting so wrongs within the PNC, he has his good side as well.
He said people who always accused him of litigation at the courts may also not be angels after all and did only the right.
He therefore urged the rank and file of the PNC to forget the past, unite and forge ahead of the 2012 elections for victory.
Asked by the Times about allegation that he was not 40 years and therefore not eligible to stand for the upcoming presidential elections, Mr Ayariga retorted, “I am 40 year old”.
He said the allegation was a ploy adopted by his opponents to discredit him and lure voters to the side of Dr Mahama.
He also disclosed the PNC was open to discussions with its sister party, the Convention People Party for a merger.