"I choose the limits of my writing, not interpretation" – Kwaku Nti
Finally, it was announced and Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo as expected swept a greater percentage of valid votes cast in the NPP flagbearer contest organized on Saturday, 18th October, 2014. By the declaration, he has booked another date of destiny with President John Dramani Mahama. The showdown would be in Ghana on 7th December, 2016 when each would seek to inch past the other.
With this high level of acclamation granted Nana Addo, he cannot help but win the ultimate for the party. Rarely would he have the chance of living his childhood dream should he miss this great opportunity in 2016. In short, it is his last shot at goal which outcome would not determine whether he should be substituted or allowed to be on the pitch for an extra minute. Hence, he better brings out his best skill and intelligence of the game and shoot to score so that he would bow out of the game when the applaud is highest.
Likewise, President Mahama owes it a duty to ensure that he wins convincingly in the 2016 polls if he seeks not to write history as the first occupant of the highest office in the fourth republic to have been voted out after his first term. He would again make another history for himself as the only person in the fourth republic to have been sworn in three times as President and also served for more than eight years democratically if he wins.
Also, it would be an open declaration of the fact that the NDC government which has widely been criticized for one level of abysmal performance or the other is not that bad as has been declared by opposition parties. A convincing win is also necessary to communicate the fact that the NDC does not need the collaboration of any agency to win elections as was disseminated after the 2012 elections. I wish to call on the Electoral Commission (EC) to also be up and doing and perform its roles effectively to spare Ghanaians of any court case.
These national level analyses would have to wait as there would be more time in the political world of Ghana for their discussion. What is of importance here is how the returns of the NPP’s congress mean for the political future of the contestants. Does the results point to the fact that some would have to take a bow and allow in new ones or perhaps an encouragement that they should continue pushing and hope for a better outcome one day.
Though Addia Nimoh Francis has been a politician of many years standing in his Mampong constituency, next to little was known about him on the national front. Obviously, after almost six years in Parliament, he cannot be said to be said to be among the top legislators in the house. It is an undeniable fact most journalists in Ghana had to search hard to get his profile when they tried to do an analysis of the effect he would have on the polls.
Hence, it was not surprising when the media developed significant interest in him and his campaign after he inched past veteran NPP flagbearer contender, Kofi Konadu Apraku and known politicians like Stephen Asamoah Boateng to make the shortlist for the finals of the NPP polls. Per his seemingly calm nature, he had done a yeoman’s job and hence the applaud at the time was a deserved one. Thus, it can be said for certain that competing with the likes of Akufo-Addo and Alan Kyermanten has shot up his profile. Political pundits would be more right when he is cited as a member of the long queue of NPP members who seek to lead the party one day.
As stated in my previous article, Addai had nothing to prove at the congress. He was not in the category of the likes of Kyeremanten and Akufo-Addo who were there to show the significant influence they enjoy in the party. Addai Nimoh was only there to gain and also prove that he must always be counted as a contender for the position.
Perhaps fearing that his 0.***% which he recorded in the contest would be lost by the next four years, Addai Nimoh has already started working according to my counsel which was for him to play significant role in the Nana Addo campaign for 2016. Guided by the principle that the poster of the dead is a warning to the living, I continuously urge Mr. Nimoh in all sincerity to always prefer a front role whenever he appears at a party event. He must be quick to run to the media for interview and lobby to address party supporters at the least opportunity. This is part of the means of avoiding the Alan Kyeremanten ‘headache’ which has been that he has always taken back roles after he lose contests and do not contribute significantly to party campaign. But once again, I caution that this must be done tactically to avoid trekking along the ‘Sir John path’.
A dashed presidential ambition?
With Kyeremanten, I must state that I was part of the analyst that believed his interest in the elephant family would have been better protected and served if he had thrown his weight behind Nana Addo. At least, this opportunity came knocking twice but he failed to sail with it. And now, herein lies his uncertain presidential ambition. If time could be reversed, I guess Mr. Kyeramanten could have done so and possibly silence the likes of Nana Ohene Ntow who have worsened his plight with their needless rants and criticisms of Nana Addo. But time lost, they say can never be recovered, hence the need to fight to protect the 7% which he has left.
It is my considered opinion that Mr. Kyeremanten after recording a sharper decline in the percentage of influence he has in his party since 2007 when he officially decided to contest for flagbearer do something to salvage his political career. A commission of inquiry into his dwindling performance, I think would help. He needs to unleash his vociferous communicators to go round and know what is causing a decline in influence in the party. For the sake of this article, I would point out a few things which I think when worked on, would help resurrect his influence in the NPP. They include the propagandas that he resigned from the party, have always taken a back seat anytime he loses primaries, couldn’t manage the Presidential Special Initiatives on cassava and was not available for the party during the Supreme Court verdict.
To me, Mr. Kyeremanten owes it a duty to simply apologise to the rank and file of his party for taking the decision to resign from the party at a time when he felt his followers were being harassed by his opponents. He has to explain that like any person in life, he rescinded his decision after persuasion by known leaders of the party and that is what matters. He regrets the decision and promise it would never happen again since he is now committed and would work to ensure that the party realizes its vision of capturing power and ruling the country. Such an apology, when rendered, I believe would be accepted by the party members since every person at one stage or the other makes a U-turn from one decision or the other. And one’s ability to listen to good counsel like he did when approached by the NPP leadership at the time is what makes that person a great leader.
Secondly, he has never taken a back seat but has always been supporting the party from afar with money and other logistics when necessary. He must in the run up to the 2016 elections show practically, that he is interested in the party’s issues by committing himself wholly to the campaign of Nana Addo. Similar to Addai Nimoh, he must struggle for front seats where necessary voicing out what he deems fit. Alan must in all humility, endure whatever treatment which may be given him since he knows what he wants.
Also, Mr. Kyeremanten must disseminate information on his achievements as the Trades and Industries Minister very well alerting Ghanaians of the fact that he holds the keys to not just winning power for the NPP but also tackling the country’s ailing economy. All these can be achieved with a competent communication team perhaps with people who can help his percentage appreciate the next time he contest an NPP primary. Failure to do these would mean he and his ambition would have to relax for some thirty years to come as his party’s queue of flagbearers would be too long to accommodate him.
A time to go for the kill
Apart from the late Mills who received a whopping 97% endorsement in the FONKAR-GAMES and Jerry Rawlings and Kufuor who by virtue of their incumbency went into polls with strong percentages, Nana Addo would be the single opposition leader to be entering a race with such high level of percentage. He is simply riding high on the back of the elephant and he simply cannot let them down. Hence, he must leave no stone unturned in trying to woo voters to support the ideology of his party. But the question as to whether Nana Addo can go for the kill for his party would have to be answered in the next Library of Kwaku Nti where I would scrutinize the strengths and weaknesses of Nana Addo as Presidential material including adding the strong points I think he must take into consideration to win the 2016 elections.
Until then, always remember that, I choose the limits of my writing and not your interpretation.