General News of Wednesday, 4 January 2017
President John Dramani Mahama seems to have put a stone in the works of those clamouring for him to contest for the 2020 slot of the National Democratic Congress (NDC). Speaking to a group of close associates, the President said whilst he is humbled, he has decided not to consider putting himself up for the NDC’s 2020 slot.
This definitive statement is likely to pour cold water on two recent statements by two leading members of the party that he (Mahama) would be persuaded to contest for the NDC’s 2020 slot. The first was the Minister of Sports and Member of Parliament (MP) for Odododiodoo, Nii Lante Vanderpuije in an interview on Starr 103.FM. The second was by the NDC’s 2016 campaign co-ordinator, Mr. Kofi Adams on Asempa FM.
I Will Mobilise Mahama 2020 Comeback – Kofi Adams
The 2016 campaign coordinator of the failed president John Mahama re-election bid, Kofi Adams has stated that he would reject a decision by the outgoing president not to contest in the 2020 presidential race.
President Mahama lost in last year’s presidential race at the hands of Nana Akufo-Addo, the leader of the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP).
Mahama polled 4,713,277 votes representing 44.40% of the total votes cast as against Akufo-Addo’s 5,716,026 votes representing 53.85%.
That notwithstanding, Mr. Adams said he expects the president to make a comeback in 2020 adding that he would be hurt should the president do otherwise.
“If he decides not to run for elections, I will be disappointed…I will mobilise people against that,” he said on Asempa FM.
NDC Will Force Mahama To Contest Election 2020 – Vanderpuije
The Minister of Sports Nii Lante Vanderpuije has served notice President John Mahama will return as the National Democratic Congress (NDC) presidential candidate in the 2020 elections, despite a humiliating defeat in the December polls.
Speaking on personality profile show – Starr Chat – on Starr 103.5 FM, Mr. Vanderpuije stressed Mahama will be “forced” by party members to stage a comeback because he is the obvious choice to lead the outgoing NDC government.
“We’ll force John Mahama to go,” the MP for Odododiodoo told his host Bola Ray. The outspoken and controversial lawmaker is optimistic his boss will be on the ballot again in four years’ time, adding there is no way his running mate Kwesi Amissah-Arthur will contest if Mahama declines.
“If John Mahama will not go, Amissah-Arthur will not go,” Mr. Vanderpuije was emphatic, noting that a reverse decision by the outgoing vice president will be a “betrayal” of his boss. President Mahama lost the 2016 elections by a shocking 1.5 million votes difference to veteran opposition leader Nana Akufo-Addo, who polled 53%. He becomes the first sitting President under the Fourth Republic to have tasted defeat. The president-elect will be sworn in come January 7, 2017.
In the event Mahama refuses to contest the next elections, Mr. Vanderpuije could not place his bet on former flagbearer hopeful, Ekow Spio-Garbrah, 63, arguing age has caught up with him. He believes the party may consider a young and vibrant candidate and also ruled out outgoing chief of staff Julius Debrah.
“Julius Debrah will not go, I know him. He is my former boss. He would have given me a hint,” Mr. Vanderpuije opined.
He has, however, sent a note of caution to the New Patriotic Party (NPP) to “watch out” because the NDC is going to “correct our mistakes and comeback like ‘kakai’”.