General News of Tuesday, 22 April 2014
The National Treasurer of the Peoples National Convention, David Apasera, has perhaps given credence to a widely held perception, by attributing the party’s abysmal performance in the last elections to the fielding of a bad presidential candidate.
He told Ultimate Radio, voters did not consider the 2012 flagbearer, Hassan Ayariga, a serious enough candidate worth voting for because he was more of a comedian than a politician.
He likened the flagbearer to popular local comedian, Agya Koo, and pointed out that no one will vote such a person into political power.
Mr. Apasera admitted a failure on the part of the PNC leadership to do a thorough background check on Mr. Hassan Ayariga before electing him to lead the party, and revealed a search has already begun for a better candidate for the 2016 elections. He ruled out the possibility of Mr. Ayariga leading the PNC in 2016.
“I don’t think that the last election we suffered because we went for congress late. I think it was the candidate that we had that affected us. The candidate was not the best for us, so certainly what we got was as a result of that unfortunate situation. We have very good materials that are expressing interest and I believe that if any of those is given the nod at the congress, we will chalk surprises.
“In the last election, it was purely a bad candidate who never supported anybody in the campaign and he didn’t do well for us, especially those of us who stood in the parliamentary elections. So certainly, he cannot see himself ever leading this party; maybe he has to go places and refine himself better and then it will be in the near future, not now. He may have to go through schooling and get himself properly educated otherwise what was happening was just like comedy, and nobody votes for anybody who is not serious."
“If you are turning yourself into a comedian, then we better go and take the best comedian in Ghana, like Agya Koo. Agya Koo is more popular, but nobody will entrust party leadership to Agya Koo because he has his field,” he noted.
Hassan Ayariga polled a meager 24, 617 votes in the 2012 elections, representing 0.22% of the total votes cast. This was a poor performance compared to 2008, where three-time Flagbearer, Dr. Edward Mahama, polled 73,494 representing 0.9% of the total votes cast. The party also in 2012 won only one parliamentary seat from the initial two it occupied.
Hassan Ayariga became a substance of ridicule on national television when during a presidential debate ahead of election 2012; he coughed intermittently and proffered arguably weird solutions to the country’s problems. For his intermittent coughs which many thought was feigned; an imaginative cough mixture was created and named ‘Ayaricough’ amongst others.
The PNC National Treasurer, David Apasera, is currently in court after he was sued by Hassan Ayariga over allegations that he (Hassan Ayariga) misappropriated some GHc1.6 million meant for the party’s 2012 campaign activities.
Angry Hassan Ayariga in his lawsuit is claiming exemplary damages of GHc1 million. He is also praying the court to restrain Mr. Apasera and his surrogates from further publishing falsehood in the mass media, which he considers defamatory to him.
The PNC Treasurer, Mr. David Apasera, has stated that he is unperturbed about Mr. Hassan Ayariga’s court action.