Politics of Thursday, 22 May 2014
Battle for NDC Chairman Slot
As the political clock ticks towards the penultimate battle readiness of the ruling National Democratic Congress for the 2016 general elections and with party kingpins jostling to secure national executive positions, new entrants to the race for the post of national chairman are Alhaji Hudu Yahaya and Madam Betty Mould-Iddrisu.
Information filtering into the office of The aL-hAJJ indicate that though the duo are yet to make public their decision to contest the NDC’s most coveted position, party insiders say they have been whispering to confidants their burning desire to be the arrowheads of the ruling party.
Their entry ups the number of NDC heavyweights scheming to secure the national chairman post to five. So far, incumbent National Chairman Dr Kwabena Adjei; a vice Chairman and National Coordinator of the National Disaster Management Organization, Mr Kofi Poturphy and former Ambassador to Malaysia, Mr Dan Abodakpi have all made known their desire for the same.
Alhaji Hudu Yahaya, who is also a vice Chairman of the party, according sources close to him is eyeing the position to among other things make nonsense the opposition New Patriotic Party’s believe that by electing a Northern Chairman in the person Paul Afoko, they would snatch the three Northern regions from the ruling party in the 2016 elections.
With his stature as an experience political figure and well known among Northerners, analysts believe a Hudu Yahaya Chairmanship will eclipse the NPP chairman’s supposed political clout up north.
When The aL-hAJJ caught up with the shrewd northern political strategist and legal practitioner, he would neither deny nor confirm reports that he is bracing up to square off with his boss Dr Kwabena Adjei and others.
While giggling when the question was put to him, he stated “I’m a vice Chairman of the party, a member of the National Executive and member of the constitution review committee of the party…I’m working to restructure the party and I don’t think I should be preoccupied with such intensions now”
Ask whether he will seek re-election as national vice chairman when the party opens nomination later this year or early next year, Alhaji Hudu Yayaha in a droll tone noted “let’s live that one for now…we can talk about it at the right time. For now, I’m working as national vice chairman so let’s wait when the right time comes, we’ll talk about it.”
On her part, attempts to reach Madam Betty Mould Iddrisu proved futile as she was said to have been out of the country and expected back ending of this month, however, a source close to the former Attorney General and Minister of Justice confirmed her intention to run for the NDC chairman position.
According to the source, the former Intellectual Property expert and lecturer has given every indication of running for the national chair position of the ruling party.
The one-time Education Minister in the erstwhile Mills administration who is also the first Ghanaian woman to have served as head of Legal and Constitutional Affairs of the Commonwealth Secretariat in London, is said to be flying her national chair ambition on the crest wave of gender.
Madam Mould Iddrisu’s pedigree in Ghanaian politics cannot be underestimated as she was the first Ghanaian woman to have served as Minister of Justice and Attorney General and was widely tipped to partner the late Prof Mills for the 2008 elections until she lost out at the last minute to the then Bole-Bamboi MP and now President, John Dramani Mahama.
While political pundits say the national chairmanship contest is a two horse race between incumbent Dr Kwabena Adjei and Kofi Portuphy; the entry of Alhaji Hudu Yahaya and Betty Mould Iddrisu is likely to bring a new perspective to the race.
The new entrants are believed to be wielding enormous political clout in the ruling party that victory for anyone of them at the congress won’t come as a surprise.