Even though the governing National Democratic Congress (NDC) has enjoyed tremendous support from Muslim communities, popularly known as ‘Zongos’, the party does not have policies to develop such areas, the Zongo Movement for Change (ZOMOC) has said.
The group’s accusation of the NDC stemmed from what it said was the failure of the NDC to outline any developmental policy in their manifesto for Zongos ahead of the 2016 elections.
“A careful read of all the pages of the 2016 NDC manifesto shows no development policy for the Zongo community in the country,” ZOMOC said in a press statement released on Thursday October 6.
According to the group, “The NDC's conspicuous lack of a development policy for the Zongo community in the country shows clearly their neglect of the Zongos, as well as their lack of vision and concern for both human and infrastructural development within these communities. It also shows the level at which they have taken Zongo communities for granted.”
ZOMOC added that the “NDC is deluded into believing that Zongo communities are not awake, and we will still fall for their grand deception. Zongo communities are wide awake now, and we are not surprised that even a key communicator of the NDC in the Zongos, Mr Mohammed Awal, has dumped the NDC and joined the NPP”.
For them, they were wide awake and would not fall for the deception of any political party which will ride on their support and neglect them after winning.
Below is the full statement:
PRESS STATEMENT: NDC'S LACK OF DEVELOPMENT POLICY FOR ZONGO COMMUNITIES UNDERLINES HOW THEY HAVE TAKEN THE PEOPLE OF ZONGO FOR GRANTED
The Zongo Movement for Change (ZOMOC), in a press statement issued on February 15, 2016, challenged the National Democratic Congress (NDC) to come out with its alternative development policy to the New Patriotic Party's Zongo Development Fund (ZDF) announced earlier this year by Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, flag bearer of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) for the 2016 elections.
The challenge to the NDC followed their vicious criticism of the NPP's development policy for Zongos throughout the country, without offering any alternative policy.
It has been eight months since ZOMOC threw this public challenge to the NDC, and the NDC has since launched its campaign and manifesto without a development policy for the Zongos. A careful read of all the pages of the 2016 NDC manifesto shows no development policy for the Zongo community in the country.
The NDC's conspicuous lack of a development policy for the Zongo community in the country shows clearly their neglect of the Zongos, as well as their lack of vision and concern for both human and infrastructural development within these communities. It also shows the level at which they have taken Zongo communities for granted.
Having enjoyed tremendous support from Zongo communities in the past, it is disheartening how the NDC has neglected Zongo communities in the country. Despite numerous honey-coated promises by the NDC, especially in the last elections, Zongo communities today remain among the most underdeveloped anywhere in the country.
The underdevelopment of Zongo communities, coupled with the current harsh economic conditions in the country which have rendered many of our young people jobless, has awakened members of the Zongo community.
For the NDC, development in the Zongos means their demeaning and deceptive distribution of goodies during Ramadan or Eid, as well as distribution of cash during campaign periods. This is not development, but a sickening insult to our intelligence, which we will not accept. Neither will we accept the NDC's bizarre and outmoded tactics of resorting to tribalism to pitch Zongos against the NPP as an Akan party, even though no political party in Ghana has only members of a particular tribe as its members
The NDC, since the announcement of the Zongo Development policy, has resorted to dirty, divisive campaigning in the Zongos. The unfortunate, divisive and false comments by Brong Ahafo Regional Minister Mr Eric Opoku that Moslims in NPP are not true Moslims because the Elephant has been cursed in the Holy Quran, as well as the recent tribal comments by Chief of Staff, Mr Julius Debrah, in Wa that northerners should vote for President Mahama because he is one of their own, clearly point to the NDC’s desperation for Zongo votes.
The 2016 election is a crucial one which ought to be fought on issues, not lies, tribalism, deception and propaganda. This is why we threw a challenge to the NDC to roll out their alternative Zongo development policy to the NPP and it is obvious they have no message for us.
The NDC is deluded into believing that Zongo communities are not awake, and we will still fall for their grand deception. Zongo communities are wide awake now, and we are not surprised that even a key communicator of the NDC in the Zongos, Mr Mohammed Awal, has dumped the NDC and joined the NPP.
Awal Mohammed is not alone; there are thousands of silent disenchanted NDC members in the Zongos who have lost confidence in the NDC and will vote for CHANGE come December 7, Insha Allah.
Zongos, just like Ghana, are not poor and shouldn't be poor. We are blessed with incredible talent and hard-working people. What we need is a visionary government and a leader who will put in place an effective development policy to address the needs of our community.
Nana Akufo-Addo and the NPP have demonstrated this clear vision for Zongo communities through the Zongo Development Fund policy, which seeks to aid our hardworking people, particularly the youth.
We are awake! We know those who truly care for us and those whose only intention is to deceive us for our votes and abandon us afterwards.
Arise for Change! Taashi ka saake! May Allah bless our country Ghana.
Thank you. SIGNED: Khalid Abdul-Qadir Mainasara (Secretary) Mohammed Hashir Issah (Director of Operations and Communication)