A political analyst and lecturer at the University of Ghana, Legon, Dr. Kobby Mensah, has stated categorically that the Vice President Dr Alhaji Mahamadu Bawumia has no solid foundation in the New Patriotic Party (NPP) that could make him to become the Presidential Candidate for the party after the exit of President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo- Addo.
According to him, Dr Bawumia hasn’t grown into the “party stalwart” that could keep taps on party agitation and ensure coherence.
The researcher pointed out that on the other hand, the Minister for Trade and Industry, Mr Alan John Kwadwo Kyerematen, who he reckons as a formidable candidate for the flagbearer in the NPP has a consolidated constituency over the period of having contested three consecutive primaries of the party.
According to Dr Mensah, the other party stalwarts and their followers who have been in contests with Mr Kyerematen and President Akufo-Addo all these while, such as the Former Member of Parliament for Offinso North constituency, Dr Kofi Konadu Apraku, Member of Parliament for Essikado, Hon. Joe Ghartey amongst others will find it humiliating to accept Dr Bawumia leadership and that can destabilise the NPP.
He underscored that going into the flagbearership race, the contribution of the contestants to the party since it’s formation would be critical. According to him, the NPPis an establishment party and that the internal party campaign is fought on stewardship, loyalty and electability - based on your ability to mobilise a coalition of votes.
Dr Mensah explained that there has been a particular voting preference in Ghana and across the African continent that limits the winnability coefficient of young presidential aspirants during general elections.
He told the host of Good Evening Ghana, Mr. Paul Adom-Otchere, that Ghanaians like most African countries easily trust their votes with elderly candidates than younger ones who contest elections.
“You realize that the Ghanaian voter often goes for an elderly person, and not only that, almost all African country, you see a certain level of age. And I think a reason why President Mahama struggled was because of the age-factor. People associated young persons with a certain lifestyle” he noted.
The political analyst stressed that his argument are not based on any empirical research but on mere observations of voting preferences in Ghana and across Africa.
Dr. Mensah posited that the only factor that could alter his prediction is the pending primaries of the New Patriotic Party.
Albeit he believed his analogy could find prominence in the NPP's internal election, adding that "it's more of a contest between Alan and Dr Bawumia."
Dr. Kobby Mensah avers the NPP has an inherent leadership path that had remain typically traditional, which ascribes power to persons in an ordered sequence based on 'seniority' and consistency.
Although the President hinted to the Asantehene in Manhyia last week that Mr. Kyerematen and Hon. Afriyie Akoto, Minister of Agriculture would be contesting for the Presidential slot, so far, only two persons have declared their intention to contest the flagbearership. Hon. Joe Ghartey, former Minister for Railway Development, was the first to have announced his interest for the flagbearer-ship. Former Minister for Energy, Mr Boakye Agyarko had recently announced his interest too.
Dr Bawumia and Mr Alan Kyerematen are yet to publicly declare their intention but the rumours and secret campaign makes it obvious they will soon join the race when the party gives the green light for them to campaign.
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