Should opinion polls win elections, then Yaw Osafo-Maafo could become the biblical cornerstone for the ruling New Patriotic Party.

According to the Public Agenda newspaper, even though Yaw Osafo-Maafo is not highly tipped to lead the NPP in 2008 back home, the Akim Oda gentleman is enjoying a kingly ride beyond the boundaries of Ghana.

The paper insists that per a recent poll by Research International, Osafo-Maafo is not considered a likely winner. On the level of recognition for the aspirants among potential voters and party executives, Nana Akufo Addo tops, followed by Alhaji Aliu Mahama, Dr. Addo-Kufuor, Alan Kyerematen and Yaw Osafo-Maafo. Of course, this poll and others have been hotly disputed by the other aspirants, depending on where the poll pegs them.

The paper said its opinion polls carried out Ghanaian communities living in South Africa, the USA, Nigeria and Liberia have identified Osafo-Maafo as the most ideal candidate for the NPP slot, come December.

Closing in on him Osafo-Maafo, Mr. Alan Kyerematen, the handsome looking castle “lover boy”. If only his CHRAJ episode will erase from the minds of Ghanaians when given the nod is the question NPP delegates should consider before congress.

While many respondents believe it is time for Nana Akufo-Addo to take his rightful place in Ghana’s politics, few are of the opinion that, the unity among the rank and file of the party should be paramount in taking any such gamble. The grassroots are craving for a youthful generation and the Akyem seasoned lawyer is seen to belong to the old order.

One might ask, what do NPP delegates want in their flag bearer? When I put this to a branch chairman in one of this countries I visited, he said their leader must have the ability to get things done, must have drive and determination, ability to take initiatives, must be an all time achiever and above all some¬one credible enough to give the party swing votes.

With the above traits in mind, they believe Yaw Osafo-Maafo has done enough as a minister.

His achievements at the Finance Ministry, when he was resolute in the implementation of his brainchild, the HIPC initiative which liberated Ghanaians from the frightening debt the previous government left for them speaks volumes of political acumen, some respondents said.

Talking on the economy, a party branch secretary in South Africa lauded the Akim Oda MP for reducing inflation and bringing Ghana’s previous fragile economy to a stable and an appreciable level to the admiration of foreign investors. “If Ghana is now seen as the safe gateway to Africa in terms of foreign investments, then Ghanaians must thank President Kufuor for bringing Osafo-Maafo to the Finance Ministry” he said.

On his failure on the much talked about IFC loan, the NPP executive in California jumped to the defence of his party; “I don’t think we have only NPP MP’s in parliament, so if parliament was able to pass such a loan, why then do we have to blame the NPP and Osafo-Maafo” he quizzed.

“The man is good, an all-round achiever, he is to the world, one of the greatest economists of this generation, if a Ghanaian is able to change fragile economics such as that of Gabon and now Liberia, why can’t we Ghanaians use him well, after all I understand he is the “African God” of the World Bank” he ‘continued.

“It was his drive and determination that took us to our first ever World Cup, have you soon forgotten the slogan “Osafo Maafo nie, World Cup nie? Why do we take him from the sport ministry as well?” he lamented.

“When you go, tell my party delegates, we want a flagbearer that Ghanaians will vote for not anyone they the delegates like because we don’t want into go to opposition.”

On the chances of the Vice President, Aliu Mahama, it seems the man is not charismatic for the liking of his party faithful in the Diaspora. He is deemed here as an outsider to the race. Many NPP diasporans say when he becomes the flagbearer there might be disaster for the party in the wake of the opposition NDC putting in John Mahama to partner Prof. Mills.

Source: Public Agenda

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