You are here: HomeNews2021 11 15Article 1401955

Politics of Monday, 15 November 2021


JJ, Konadu wanted Mahama as Mills’ vice in 2004 – Victor Smith reveals

Mills picked Mahama as his vice for the 2008 elections

• President Mills was a resolute leader as the NDC's flagbearer

• Mills contested the presidency thrice and won on the third try

• The former First Family wanted him to pick John Mahama as candidate in 2004

The former First Family had wanted to wield some influence over the National Democratic Congress, NDC, years after the party lost power but other stakeholders stood up to them on the basis of principle.

One such character was late President John Evans Atta Mills who led the party into three elections – in 2000, 2004 and 2012.

According to a former aide of the Rawlings’ they had at a point wanted to have a say on who becomes Vice Presidential candidate for Mils, but the professor at the time chose to stick with the party position.

Smith, speaking last week on Accra-based CTV, disclosed that in 2004, when Mills was going for his second bid for the presidency against then-incumbent John Agyekum Kufuor, Jerry and Konadu Rawlings tried to intervene.

“It is either Rawlings felt that I brought you (Mills) into politics so everything I say you must do. Atta Mills wasn’t that kind of person. Not everything you say that I will do. If it doesn’t make sense to him, he will argue it out with you and tell you why it cannot be done.

“To be frank with you, in 2004, when he was choosing his running mate, President Rawlings and Mrs. Rrawlings and myself wanted him to choose John Mahama but because he had gone into a meeting with the party hierarchy and agreed that it had to be a Muslim running mate, he wasn’t going to change his mind,” he said.

According to him, they say with Mills in a room for one hour trying to convince him but he won’t budge. “This was him eyeball to eyeball with Rawlings. He won’t change it so we went with Alhaji Mamudu,” he added.

Mills run with a different Vice Presidential candidate for the three times he contested the presidency. In 2000, he went with Martin Amidu before picking Mohammed Mumuni in 2004 and John Mahama in 2012.

He won in 2014 with Mahama becoming veep. Mahama later succeeded Mills after he passed in 2016 before winning his first full term in office.