Politics of Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Source: Daily Graphic

Akufo-Addo grateful to govt, Ghanaians

The New Patriotic Party (NPP) has commended the government and the people of Ghana for the dignified and befitting burial they accorded former Vice- President Alhaji Aliu Mahama.

It said his death had been uplifting even in the midst of the tragedy, with people from all walks of life and political background coming together to mourn and give him a befitting burial, especially those in Tamale.

Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, the NPP presidential candidate, who was addressing a section of the media at his Nima Residence in Accra, said “what happened in Tamale yesterday is something that will stay with me for a long time and will want to express the gratitude of our party to all Ghanaians”.

He described Alhaji Mahama as the first Vice-President with a Muslim background whose preoccupation was the concerns of those from the three northern region and those with Muslim orientation.

“His mere presence on the Kufuor ticket was a symbol of the unity of Ghana”, he added and explained that it indicated that Ghana was a nation made up of ethnic and religious groups and that it was imperative that the government structure represented the reality on the ground.

He said Aliu’s presence in the government and party was an indication that the NPP was not ready to exhibit any distinction between where one came from and his religion and also use same as a barrier to move the nation forward.

Nana Akufo-Addo saluted the late Mahama for the respected manner he engaged him (Nana Akufo) for the last 20 years even when they were both contesting for the party’s presidential primary as rivals.

He paid glowing tribute to the late veep for the personal interest he shown in Dr Mahamudu Bawumia in 2008 and 2012, even to the extent of spending his personal resources and time to ensure that Dr Bawumia was successful in his campaign.

Touching on the forthcoming elections, he said Ghana was at a delicate period of its time, where all well-meaning Ghanaians were clamouring for peaceful, and first class elections and urged the media to ensure that any group of people who wanted to cause problem were isolated so that they would not have any serious impact on the nation.

Nana Akufo-Addo, who was told by a reporter that Mr Hassan Ayariga, the PNC presidential candidate would not be part of the IEA presidential debate because he was not well, wished him speedy recovery.

He made it clear that he was ready and had laced his boots for Wednesday’s debate, noting that unlike the death of President Mills which caused the IEA to postpone the first one, the current one could not be postponed because we are at the “Osu Curve” of the race.

He explained that there was no time again to postpone the debate and that it should go on as scheduled.