Don’t You Dare Pick And Choose National Executives Else You Will Lose Again
If you thought the rivalry in the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP), has died down, you must review your notes as 70-year-old Nana Akufo-Addo, has audaciously been warned by the John Kufuor camp to play by the rules of the party or risk losing his third straight bid to be the President of Ghana.
The warning was communicated to the twice defeated presidential candidate in the media by Kwadwo Okyere Mpiani, former Chief of Staff under in President John Agyekum Kufuor’s administration, who is widely known to be pushing Alan Kyeremanteng as flagbearer, Paul Afoko as National Chairman and Kwabena Agyepong as General Secretary.
The caution from Mr. Mpiani, arguably one of the richest guys in the NPP today, comes barely two weeks to the party’s National Delegates Congress to elect national officers, who will steer affairs of the party in the next four years and ensure the party wrestles power from the ruling National
Democratic Congress (NDC).
He also disagreed with people like the Ashanti Regional Chairman, Bernard Antwi-Boasiako (Chairman Wontumi) who have suggested that Nana Addo be allowed to go unopposed saying, the NPP is a democratic party and so anyone that expresses willingness to contest, should be allowed to do so without hindrance.
Media reports are rife that some NPP regional chairmen, who are campaigning for a third term bid for Nana Addo, are going round holding a list of individual aspirants vying for national positions as Nana Addo’s preferred candidates he has personally endorsed, and is prepared to work with, so should be voted for in Tamale.
What is fueling the report is the numerous visits done by the regional chairmen and other regional executive to the Nima residence of Nana Addo to welcome him from his holidays in London. Most of them were again there during his declaration of intent to contest the flag bearer slot. Incidentally, Nana Addo’s theme for that event was “Unite For Change”.
But Mr. Mpiani, who was a very powerful person in the Kufuor administration asked, “how do the chairmen work with these individuals (those Nana is not supporting) should they be lucky enough to win the elections, or even if they lose, how do the party chairmen get them to support the cause of the party?
“The chairmen should play their roles as party officers working to ensure a fair ballot, it is not their place to determine who is voted for, and any unfair act on their part could cost the party even at the national level, because the peeved may refuse to vote in the national elections, or worse still vote against party candidates, he said in impeccable Twi dialect.
About two weeks ago, Nana Addo announced his decision to contest the NPP’s primary and if luck smiles on him, it will be his third and most probably his last chance, having turned 70 years last Saturday.
In both the 2008 and 2012 elections that he lost, it was reported that his inability to bring all feuding factions together contributed to his defeat. Indeed, his cousins and nephews from Akyem-Abukwa in the Eastern Region are the ones running the show for him and around him.
In the Ashanti Region, where the NPP draws most of its votes from, it is believed that the NPP chances in that region keep reducing, because of the seemingly rivalry between the guys from Akyem-Abukwa and the Kumasi boys, who would rather see Alan Kyeremanteng as the flagbearer.
According to Mr. Mpiani, it will be suicidal for Nana Addo to be promoting that unhealthy agenda in the party, adding the quest by ex-Foreign Affairs Minister to wrestle power for the third time, will amount to nothing, because the people he will be rejecting in the party’s election will also rightfully reject him and ensure his defeat in 2016.
Mr. Mpiani, said even though he could not tell Nana Addo could be spearheading such a thing; he told Asempa FM’s Kojo Asare Baffour Acheampong (KABA) that the allegation has the potential to threaten the party unity and called on Nana Addo to come clean.
Explaining his point further on “Ekosi Sen”, Mr. Mpiani who is seen as one of the authorities in the NPP, questioned why any right thinking leader, will be expressing desire to work with a section of his people vying for positions in the party, but will be expecting those he is rejecting to work for him, should they lose or win to get him elected.
The outspoken politician said, he was in the process to speak to Nana Addo on the issue, but called on the media to go into the issue and bring finality to it.
“I don’t think he said that but if indeed, he said it, I will be most surprised, I will be very surprised. If he does that, then he will not be a good leader, because if you claim you can’t work with others, then you are joking. You can’t lead and even if you can, it will end nowhere, because you will force me not to vote and even if I vote, I will vote against you. He should leave the decision to the grassroots to take”.
According to him, when he heard the news last Friday, he was taken aback and rhetorically questioned if leaders of the party had the interest of the party at heart or they are just happy being called chairmen in opposition, where good policies and ideas could not be implemented.
He condemned those who have been accused of rooting publicly for some in the party, saying their efforts would be fruitless.
Eastern Regional NPP chairman, Kinston Kissi, a former Member of Parliament (MP) for Akwatia, Greater Accra Regional Chairman, Ishmail Ashitey and Chairman Bernard Antwi-Boasiako (Chairman Wuntumi), have all been seen in the company of Nana Addo and purporting to be working for him.
Chairman Wuntumi in particular, travelled to the UK to see Nana Addo, after winning the regional election, which he was accused of influencing voters with huge sums of money.