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Opinions of Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Columnist: Allotey, Henry Kpakpo

Is there a natural Ga leader in Ghana? Part 2

Can a Ga person ever become president of Ghana? Looking at the current crop of Ga politicians, I sincerely have my doubts. Let us look at the two biggest political parties in Ghana, the Gas in the party and examine their strengths and weaknesses. We will also look at their chances of becoming flag bearers in their respective parties.

Nii Ayikoi Otoo (N.P.P): Nii Ayikoi Otoo served as two time Member of Parliament for the Krowor constituency which is Nungua. As a natural born Ga man, he has rose to prominence in the N.P.P and has served in various committees of the party. He is highly respected by his peers and is best remembered for describing Sir John’s bellicose as emanating from ‘Gbeshie’, a Ga word for evil spirits. Nii Ayikoi Otoo is a highly respected legal practitioner and a constitutional lawyer who has waged many constitutional battles in the Supreme Court. His legal acumen and respect for rule of law is never in doubt. But the question is Can Nii Ayikoi Otoo climb up the ladder and become the president of Ghana one day? How do his own party members treat him??

While there is no doubt that Nii Ayikoi Otoo is highly respected by his party members, same cannot be said of the top brass of the party who are the decision makers. The infamous remarks made by Hon Osei Kyei Mensah Bonsu that there is no Ga person to occupy the position of even a running mate in their party shows the utter contempt the leadership of the party may have for Ga intellectuals in their party. Another point to consider is the list of Lawyers chosen by the N.P.P party to represent them in the election petition. Among all the 12 or so Lawyers the N.P.P paraded in the Supreme Court, Nii Ayikoi Otoo was missing. This was remarkable because Nii Ayikoi Otoo as the head of the N.P.P’s legal and constitutional affairs in the party needed to have a say on who represents the party in such an important exercise. This snub apparently hurt him so bad he had to resort to the airwaves to air his grievance. This clearly shows that Nii Ayikoi Otoo’s chances of leading the N.P.P are as remote as finding an elephant in Accra despite his immeasurable credentials. If Nii Ayikoi Otoo wants to one day have a shot at the presidency, the N.P.P is not a party for him.

Professor Aaron Mike Ocquaye (N.P.P): A tower in the N.P.P and a highly respected politician in Ghana. A history professor and 3 time Member of Parliament for Dome Kwabenya constituency. Professor Mike Ocquaye was one of the brightest spot in the N.P.P, staunchly defending the party from verbal onslaught of the N.D.C. and leading the intellectual unit of the party. He was once touted as a vice presidential material of the party but had to be overlooked because of age factor. He will never get the chance to be a contender of the party because of his seemingly advances age.

Hon Oboshie Sai Coffie ( N.P.P): Much has been said of this amiable person and how she can become the first female president of Ghana if she pulls her weight. There is even talk in town that she is being prepared to partner Dr. Mahamadu Barwumia if he ever gets the chance to lead the N.P.P in 2016 election. Mrs Oboshie Sai Coffie was once an Information Minister in the Kuffour Administration. Her kindness and affable nature was very remarkable. She has never been cited in any wrongdoing and her credibility is intact. But will she stand a chance in a deeply traditional party like the N.P.P where women are mostly relegated to the background? Have we forgotten how when Akuffo Addo was close to choosing Hon Hajia Alima Mahama as her running mate it was fiercely resisted by the leaders in the party to an extent that an official protest letter was written to Akuffo Addo to shelve that idea? This will be the bane of Mrs. Oboshie Sai Coffie!

There are other Ga people in the N.P.P but they cannot measure up to this three I have mentioned above. We can talk of Sheik I.C Quaye, Stanley Adjiri Blankson, Lord Commey and similar once unknown. We can clearly see from my analysis that the chances of a Ga person rising to become President of Ghana through the N.P.P are very very remote. Apart from the three I have listed above, you cannot name any prominent Ga person in the N.P.P capable of becoming president.

The situation is even bleaker if you consider tradition in the N.P.P where it is only the Ashantis and the Akyems who have led the party throughout their history. The N.P.P has abundantly made it clear that for a choice of a running mate, they will always look to the North and a Muslim as that. So it will take a miracle for a Ga person to lead a party like the N.P.P. It will never happen, maybe not in my lifetime.

In my next article, I will look at options in the N.D.C then we can draw our own conclusions.

kpakpogh@yahoo.com ( 0243370764)