The New Patriotic Party (NPP) has issued a code of conduct to regulate the conduct of party members ahead of the 2024 presidential and parliamentary primaries for the party.
The new code of conduct adopted by the National Council of the NPP at its sitting last Tuesday, July 27, 2021 is to guide party members prior to opening of nominations for the primaries for the 2024 election.
A press release issued and signed by the General Secretary, John Boadu, on Tuesday stressed that the party reserved the right to disqualify any potential presidential or parliamentary candidate or aspirant who either directly or indirectly breached the new code of conduct.
The statement said the code of conduct was formulated in accordance with Article 18 of the NPP’s constitution and was applicable to party supporters and actors including government appointees, ministers of state, members of governing boards and councils, chief executive officers of governmental institutions, Members of Parliament (MPs), metropolitan, municipal and district chief executives (MMDCEs), aspirants or potential candidates and their supporters as well as all other members of the party.
The statement said the code of conduct would be applicable during the period preceding the opening of nominations for prospective candidates to contest the party’s presidential election and should be in force until the general secretary of the party, on behalf of the National Executive Committee/ National Council, officially opened nominations for prospective candidates for the primaries in the presidential and parliamentary elections as stipulated in the party’s constitution.
According to the statement, an exception has been made for parliamentary aspirants in constituencies which do not have NPP Members of Parliament (MPs) indicating that in parliamentary primaries in such constituencies, the NEC reserved the right to alter the applicability of the new code of conduct of the party.
The statement said sanctions including fines, suspension, and expulsion from the party or disqualification from holding any office or position in the party for a stated period would be imposed on any member of the NPP who failed, neglected or refused to comply with the orders of the code of conduct.
The new code of conduct mandates all members, supporters and sympathisers of the NPP at all levels to refrain from using both traditional and new media to attack the integrity and reputation of other members, particularly leading members perceived to be nurturing presidential or parliamentary ambitions.
Also all members of the NPP are to refrain from openly debating on the suitability, desirability or otherwise of presidential or parliamentary candidates until the party formally opens nominations through the general secretary.
According to the statement, members are not to initiate early gatherings camouflaged as activities or meetings which have the tendency of promoting the interest of a prospective presidential or parliamentary candidate.
It said for a specific period, members of the party were to refrain from making any public statement or inferences through any print or electronic media including online portals and all social media outlets regarding the propriety or otherwise of any prospective presidential or parliamentary candidate.
The code of conducts also cautioned members of the NPP to desist from using their public office or portfolios within or outside the party to promote the interest of any prospective presidential or parliamentary candidates in order to gain unfair political advantage.
It said communicators of the NPP should not use both traditional and social media platforms to campaign for or against any prospective presidential or parliamentary candidate, warning that any party communicator who breached the code of conduct would be suspended from speaking for and on behalf of the party adding that such suspension was without prejudice to any other sanctions prescribed in the constitution of the party.
Meanwhile, the NPP has set up a National Complaints Committee, which will receive formal complaints from members against any other member who breaches the new code of conduct adopted by the party’s National Council last Tuesday.
The committee is made up of Frank Davies, who is the chairman of the Constitutional and Legal Affairs Committee, Hackman Owusu Agyeman, who is the chairman of the National Council of Elders, and John Boadu, the General Secretary.
The party said the mandate of the National Complaints Committee was to investigate each complaint of violations of this code of conduct to determine whether or not there was a prima facie case.
“Where the committee has established a prima facie basis in a particular complaint, it shall make referral to the National Disciplinary Committee for the necessary disciplinary actions in line with the provisions of the constitution.” the statement said.