Dr Kofi Konadu Apraku
Dr Kofi Konadu Apraku, a flagbearer aspirant for the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP), is fuming over what he has described as a ‘calculated’ attempt to sideline him during the introduction of dignitaries at the just-ended Tamale congress of the NPP where he was not accorded the kind of introduction he expected.
Dr Apraku stated that while nobody took notice of his entrance apparently because Anthony Carboo, the master of ceremony (MC) at the event might have ignored him, his rivals for the flagbearership race of the party, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and John Kwadwo Alan Kyeremanteng were given a raucous reception when they emerged at the conference grounds at the Tamale Stadium last Saturday.
‘…I was surprised. Who can deceive me into thinking that it was an oversight? Dr Apraku was sitting in front of Mr Mac Manu [but] Mr Mac Manu was introduced…what were the criteria? Should we believe that they want to limit the flagbearership race to anybody apart from Dr Apraku? It was amazing but we are now seriously working so we do not want to get into this,’ Dr Apraku’s aide, Baah Acheamfuor on Tuesday lamented on Accra-based Radio XYZ.
Mr Acheamfour concluded that ‘…It was a calculated attempt to do that and they succeeded in doing it but that will not make us give up. It will rather strengthen us.’
Dr Konadu Apraku is one of the front-runners gunning for the NPP flagbearership, but he has often complained about the unfair playing grounds given him in the stead of his other competitors, particularly Nana Addo and Mr Kyeremanteng seen by party supporters as most popular.
Dr Apraku recently sounded an alarm that some people, possibly within his party want him dead as he escaped several armed robbery attacks in the past couple of months.
The one time Minister of State in the former NPP administration was quoted in the media as saying, ‘The incessant robberies cannot be a mere coincidence because it started immediately after my controversial criticism of the party’s incumbent flagbearer ( Nana Akufo-Addo) in a lecture delivered to the student’s wing of the party (TESCON) late last year in Kumasi.’
At the TESCON lectures, Dr Apraku who directed Akufo-Addo’s 2012 campaign, highlighted the fact that the incumbent flagbearer was not suitable for winning the presidential polls for the party in 2016 because his popularity among electorates have declined over the two periods he has contested the presidency on the party’s ticket.
Indeed, Dr Apraku’s campaign office recently officially re-choed what they referred to as Akufo-Addo’s dwindling fortunes in the 10 regions of Ghana
Dennis Kobina, Dr Apraku’s spokesperson explained, ‘Former President Kufuor in his first victory won five regions. The second time, he won seven regions. So when Kufuor was leaving, he handed over seven regions to Nana Addo.’
‘Let’s compare that to now. Nana Addo dropped from seven to two regions (in his first trial). The second time, he dropped from two regions to one and a half regions. My boss is ready to take [the NPP] from one and half regions to seven regions,’ he stated, inferring that his boss was the best choice for the opposition party.
It is unclear what the NPP’s delegates think about the tussle for the flagbearer. It is certain to become evident when the party goes for its delegates congress for its flagbearer by the close of this year.
By Raphael Ofori-Adeniran
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