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Opinions of Sunday, 13 April 2014

Columnist: Al-Hajj

Akufo-Addo -Ghana’s John McCain in the making

President At 73?

When Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo finally takes a bow out of the ugly jaws of politics in future, he will be remembered as the pre-colonial born archetypal Ghanaian politician to equal the records of United States Republican presidential nominee for the 2008 elections, Senator John Sidney McCain III.

Aside making history as the only Ghanaian leading a major political party into an election at age 72 and possibly, to be sworn into office at almost age 73 in the event he wins the 2016 elections, Nana Akufo-Addo would be reenacting what happened in the 2008 American elections.

Aiming to contest the 2016 elections at the exact age Senator John McCain contested the 2008 elections against a relatively young Barack Hussein Obama; Nana Akufo-Addo is expected to be bombarded with age related issues as happened to Senator John McCain.

Having been reduced from a fine and energetic politician to an old warhorse that has seen too many battles, the twice defeated presidential candidate of the opposition New Patriotic Party, like John McCain has begun answering questions about his age with quips as "I'm humbled by the confidence reposed in me; and I am profoundly grateful that so many people who want me to run even at the young age of 70.”

An obvious admission of being well-informed about the herculean task ahead of him as he is bound to suffer the fate of 2008 Republican presidential nominee John McCain, who had to sometimes play into ageist stereotypes to deflate the “the politics of age” strongly against him during the American election, Nana Akufo-Addo; who would have about two months to mark his 73rd birthday on January 7, 2017 when the next Ghanaian president would be sworn into office is not likely to escape the “McCain disease”.

In the 2008 American election, the Arizona Senator turned Republican presidential nominee had to spend valuable times and energy responding to his age. Senator John McCain’s age, which was regarded as the oldest age to contest President in America’s history became a non-stop punch lines and hackneyed staple for American comedians in the 2008 election.

A two minutes two seconds video recording, in the possession of The aL-hAJJ showed how an American comedian mocked Senator John McCain for daring to contest the presidency at an advanced age of 72.

Bits of the American Comedian’s hilarious jesting of Senator John McCain’s age goes like this; “now who do we have running for President; who the hell is running for President. You got John McCain, John McCain, 72 years old. He was too old 10 years ago. 72..? He is the old city podium oh men, I don’t need a president with fucking lips…72 years old, ohhh?

How many 72 year olds do you see today just doing that sh*t? Old people don’t do that sh*t. What a f**k…my God. How is he going to take decisions about the future when he is not going to be around today…too old, 72..? The mother f**ker is too old. 72…?.

When you die at 72, no matter the cause, what you die of is natural cause. Even if you’re hit by truck it is natural cause… because if you were younger you’d have gone off the way of the truck,” the comedian mockingly told an overly elated audience.

Many who have watched the video have opined that if people in advanced democracies like America where age discrimination and harassment is illegal could treat Senator John McCain with such disdain, then Nana Akufo-Addo should brace up for a worse age discrimination antics in the 2016 elections.

Nana Akufo-Addo has announced his intension to again pursue his childhood dream of becoming president for the third consecutive time after failing to chalk such success in the 2008 and 2012 elections.

Despite his advanced age with its corresponding poor-health which has made his physical looks shriveled, the former Abuakwa South MP is bent on making history by contesting the 2016 election at age 72 and possibly make another history by been sworn into office at age 73, that is if he wins.