Feature Article of Tuesday, 21 August 2012
Columnist: Okyere, Aaron
By Aaron Okyere
It is true that “Men at some time are masters of their fates… the fault is not in our stars, but in ourselves…” However, for NPP flag-bearer, Akufo-Addo, this truism does not hold sway; it is the fault lies not only in him but also in his stars!
Destiny (if it exists) seems to indicate that he will never become the President of Ghana as he so desperately wants to. Defeated in the NPP primaries in 1998 by J.A Kufuor and again defeated by Prof. Mills in 2008 in the Presidential elections at a time he enjoyed the trappings of incumbency, the sudden rise of John Mahama as the current flag-bearer of the NDC seems to be the last nail that is going to be hammered into Akufo-Addo’s ambition coffin. Though grieving over the sudden and shocking demise of President Mills, many Ghanaians have stoically wiped away their tears to hail President Mahama as their choice of President for at least the next four years. And, it seems, that for the first time, a Ghanaian Presidential candidate will be able to breast the 60% mark at the Presidential elections.
At work places, homes, markets, lorry stations, churches, mosques, schools, parks, drinking bars and in vehicles, the talk of many Ghanaians is how John Dramani Mahama is the one that must be voted for this December to become the next President of Ghana.
Many non-NDC Ghanaians are boldly and publicly stating that they are going to vote for the NDC flag-bearer in the December elections. The reasons given vary from person to person. While some say he has worked hard under President Mills and proved his mettle, others say he will have their vote because he is a decent politician. A few say they will vote for him because he is handsome while others say he will have their vote because is a northerner. Many others are of the opinion that if Ghana is to continue to have the peace and unity it currently enjoys, then John Mahama must be Ghana’s next President after Mills. Yet still, others say he will have their vote because he has variously exhibited brilliance as an MP, a Minister and a Vice-President.
A few others say they will vote for him because they feel they can trust him while others simply say they will cast their ballot in his favour because he is handsome.
The northern factor also seems to count for some.
They opine that it is time a northerner becomes the President of Ghana having been Vice-Presidents for a total of eleven years and eight months; no northerner has been President of Ghana since the Fourth Republic came into being.
A bevy of beauties who work with one of the leading private banks in the country told the Daily Post that their vote for President John Mahama this December is a done deal. The irony here is that none of them is an NDC supporter.
“I was waiting to vote for him as President in 2016 but if God has pushed his Presidency forward why not. My father is CPP so I have been CPP since I grew to understand politics. But, even my father knows I am a John Mahama fan and that I will vote for him this December,” said one of them.
At a washing bay in Tema, Community One, an attendant, Joseph Owoo, told this paper that he voted for Nana Akufo-Addo in the 2008 elections but with John Mahama coming on the scene, he will vote for him (John) this December.
“As for that man, I just love him. Nothing anybody will say will convince me not to vote for him. I can’t wait for December 7,” he said. Meanwhile, intelligence this paper has picked indicates that many NPP supporters who hail from northern Ghana have resolved to vote for John Mahama and are thus finding their way into the NDC. This has led to the formation of a group, Savannah Youth Forum (SAYAF) which is to act as a rallying point for northerners to ensure that John Mahama, a northerner from Gonjaland is voted as President.
“This is not a matter of tribalism. It is simply common sense to us. Our region is the most deprived in Ghana so if a son of the soil is going to be President, and in fact is already President, we must rally round to vote keep him there. The fact that he is from the north will in itself open up the north to the world. When they ask where Ghana’s President come from, the north will be the answer. Some tourists will definitely want to visit the north to see where he’s from,” said Rakut Iddi, who hails from Yendi. “Of course, John Mahama is also someone who delivers. He is a doer. He is an achiever. We have the confidence that with him, the north will have its fair share of the national cake. We would no longer be marginalized” the NPP youth said, justifying why he is joining the NDC.
Meanwhile, the tumultuous welcome President Mahama received in the Central and Western Regions when he toured the place over the weekend to thank them for joining him mourn the departure of the late President Mills is more than a show of love, support and confidence in him, At Kasoa, he in fact had to get down and make his way to the durbur grounds on foot because the crowd waiting to see him had blocked the path of his vehicle.
At Kotokuraba market in Cape Coast, traders threw caution to the wind, defied and heckled security men to shake hands or hug him.
In the Western Region, crowds went into a state of frenzy when he arrived there. The atmosphere was very electrifying. Interestingly, as the President reminded the crowd, he had only come to thank them; he is yet to start campaigning.
Akufo-Addo might as well start singing his swan song; it simply is not his destiny to become President of Ghana however much he wants and tries to. Vain and cheap shots are expected to be thrown by his supporters at President John Mahama as is characteristics of them. The discerning in the NPP, however, have already thrown in the towel and have started putting in place their Agenda 2016 since the winner of Election 2012 is a forgone conclusion.