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The national campaign launch of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) at the Cape Coast Sports Stadium in the Central Region was, by all standards, draped in much colour, beauty and glamour.

When the Daily Graphic got to Cape Coast in the early moments of the afternoon last Saturday, all hotels in the ancient city and beyond, including Anomabu and surrounding areas had been fully booked.

In all instances, what appeared to be an unofficial branding of the hotel premises with party colours and souvenirs, served as the loudest signal that any potential guest must consider other options since the premises had become a “no go area”.

Hotels fully booked

The Graphic team, after exhausting all possible means of getting accommodated, for the sake of reaching the venue for the programme in time, had to travel back some 65 kilometres towards Accra to find a guest house.

As early as 6 a.m. last Sunday,the day of the launch, about half of the stadium had been filled by the party faithful, a situation that awed a good number of people who had thought that since the programme was starting at 1p.m., the venue would be empty at that time of the day.

But the reason for that became apparent in the fact that not long after, the stadium became full and those who arrived later, even before the start of the programme, had to stand throughout the entire duration.

What was more intriguing was the fact that food around the environs of the stadium was ready as early as 5:30 a.m. Ostensibly, food vendors had pitched camp several days ahead and being abreast of the fact that there had been early arrivals, and taken advantage of early patronage.

Level of comportment

A general observation was the level of comportment that was exhibited by party attendants in sticking to their seats, thus limiting to a large extent movement in and around the stadium till the start of the programme.

Aside from the general excitement born out of the fact that a party in government was launching its campaign, the event seemed to have set agog Cape Coast in particular, evident in the numbers of beautiful ladies with curvaceous bodies who traversed the city as prominent persons arrived.

Live band, as well as brass band music at the Cape Coast Sports Stadium, accentuated the mood and at certain times, sent the crowd into a frenzy.

Time management

There was heavy security presence evident in armed military personnel at the various entry points to the stadium with more concentration within the inner perimeter of the stadium.

The police, who seemed to be complementing the military, were largely unarmed and were playing civic roles in directing attendants to their seats.

A number of government and party officials took turns to address the gathering and when it was announced that the founder of the NDC, former President Rawlings had arrived, the level of hilarity and its accompanied noise rose to its crescendo, thus effectively cutting out live reporting and other communications.

However, one low point of the day was the fact that attendants who came in as early as 6 a.m. or before had to wait and brave the exigencies of the weather for 12 hours.

The views of a good number of people were that the number of speakers and the time allotted to each speaker should have been shorter.

It was, therefore, of little surprise that people started exiting the venue at the time when the President started delivering his address.

But on the whole, patrons described the event as a huge success, with one of them, Kojo Amu, expressing the wish that every day would be “like today”.



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