The General Secretary of the main opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), Johnson Asiedu Nketia, has defended the GH₵400,000 filing fee for flag bearer aspirants of the party.
All male flag bearer aspirants are expected to pay GH₵400,000 while female flag bearer aspirants are to pay GHS200,000 and persons with disability aspiring to the same position are to pay GH₵150,000.
The nomination form for the flag bearer slot is going for GH₵20,000.
Also, the parliamentary aspirants are expected to pay GH₵20,000 as filing fees.
Female parliamentary aspirants will pay half of that.
Some critics have raised concerns about the “exorbitant” filing fee.
Former Member of Parliament (MP) for La Dadekotopon, Nii Amasa Namoale who is a staunch supporter of flag bearer aspirant Prof Joshua Alabi, has described the fee as “outrageous”.
But Mr Nketia stated that the party needs to raise funds to organise its primaries and aspirants should have no issues coughing up the said amount.
“The cost of living is high but somebody must pay the cost of running the elections; who is going to pay?” He questioned in an interview with journalists on Thursday, 29 November 2018.
In his opinion, even though the NDC is a Social Democratic political party “social democracy is not poverty”.
He continued: “I have not declared to be a presidential candidate so those who have declared to be presidential candidates must pay the cost”.
So far, 12 people including former president John Dramani Mahama have indicated their readiness to run for the flag bearer slot of the party in the presidential primaries scheduled for 19 January 2019.
The party took the decision at a National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting on Thursday, 29 November at the party’s headquarters in Accra.