John Kumah, former Special Assistant to flagbearer aspirant, Alan Kwadwo Kyerematen, has switched camp, declaring an open support for Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to once again become the standard bearer to lead the New Patriotic Party (NPP) for the 2016 general elections.
‘I have served Mr. Alan Kyerematen as his Special Assistant. I’ve also campaigned severally for him before but I can assure you that this time around, I will not support his campaign,’ were his exact words when he spoke on Peace FM’s ‘Kokrokoo’ morning show programme last week.
Mr. Kumah, who is now a practising lawyer said, ‘I am confident that if we in the NPP give Nana Addo the position, he can wrestle power from the NDC for us.’
The declaration came as a surprise to many, including the host of the programme, Kwami Sefa Kayi, considering the relationship between John Kumah and Alan, former Minister of Trade and Industry under the erstwhile Kufuor-led NPP administration.
An obviously astonished Sefa Kayi was therefore compelled to ask why the NPP stalwart had suddenly decided to defect at such a crucial time in the history of the party.
John Kumah then responded, ‘We have worked for the party to a stage where the entire country expects the NPP to come to powerhe,’ (referring to Alan) ‘is an excellent leader who can also come and lead the NPP, just that when you travel all over Ghana, what everybody is saying is ‘bring the man of patience, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, back.”
He therefore touted the credentials of Nana, the 2008 and 2012 Presidential Candidate, who is seeking reelection to lead the party again in 2016. According to Mr. Kumah, ‘Ghanaians see him as more experienced in leadership who has cut a certain niche for himself.’
This, he said, was clear for everyone to assess and ascertain, looking at Nana Addo’s public record spanning the past 40 years.
John Kumah spoke of the unity that the two-time flagbearer had brought to the party saying, ‘Eeven the way he brought those of us who didn’t support him to his side made us to believe his vision. He is someone who is able to bring two feuding factions together.’
He denied suggestions in certain circles that either Ghanaians do not like Nana Addo as a person or cannot win power for the NPP.
‘Ghanaians know the circumstance under which he was denied an opportunity to rule this country in all the two instances that he contested the presidency as the flagbearer of the NPP, for which the results of the last elections were contested in court’, he noted.
Nana Akufo-Addo’s acceptance of the Supreme Court verdict last year – that denied him the opportunity of becoming the President of this country – to John Kumah, was very significant. He said that had earned Nana Addo the nickname ‘man of patience’ ‘because many were those who thought he would not accept the verdict of the court’ in the election petition case, especially because of the twist the NDC put on his all-die-be-die’ mantra.
For him, the fact that Nana decided to call a press conference at which he registered his displeasure on the outcome of the Supreme Court ruling and yet went ahead to accept it in good faith, made lots of Ghanaians to realize that he loves the country.
Aside Nana Addo’s promise to embark on a vigorous economic reforms, John Kumah said his promise to provide ‘free and compulsory basic education’ had gone down very well with Ghanaians.
According to him, ‘this is why Ghanaians, including those who are not members of the NPP, are asking the party to bring Nana Addo back.’
He therefore asked the rank and file of the party to rally behind the man to help bring the NPP to power, whiles appealing to potential flagbearer aspirants and their supporters to sell their messages and not personality attacks which he noted, had suddenly become the bane of the party.
By Charles Takyi-Boadu
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