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Opinions of Friday, 4 January 2008

Columnist: Afful & Manu

The "V" factor -The making of a president


N + V = P


P = PRESIDENT (2009)


TO: Nana Akufo-Addo NPP Presidential Candidate

RE: The Selection of your Running Mate

CONGRATULATIONS to you for winning the nomination as the Flag bearer of the Great NPP Party of Oman Ghana.

I believe as many of my NPP loyalist friends in the United States and abroad, that the party’s easiest job has been the selection of the nominee for the party to lead us into battle in 2008. We believe that your most important decision will be the choice of a Running Mate for the upcoming elections. With the current political chips of NDC and CPP, we further believe that your Running Mate’s ability to deliver at least one Region and neutralize at least another Region, guarantees your Presidency in 2009.

History tells us that the choice of a Running Mate or Vice Presidential candidate has always been for selfish strategic reasons. I must suggest here that all humans are essentially selfish and I certainly hope that you are no different. John F. Kennedy’s choosing of Lyndon Baines Johnson was mainly to bring along the human assets he had in the southwest, added wisdom and experience he brought to that winning team. It was definitely not because of love and friendship. It was strategic. George H W Bush used a similar strategy with Dan Quayle and so did Bill Clinton with Al Gore to attract the youthful segment of the population. These were all winning tickets born out of alliances of survival by winning a REGION or a particular SEGMENT of the population.

Yes, competency should be part of the criteria and Yes; I agree that there ought to be other factors as well.

I believe this is going to be the biggest decision you and the party leadership will have to make. This will decide if You, Nana Akufo-Addo will become the President of our Republic or NOT. I do hope and strongly suggest you take the contents of this document seriously. Please GET OUT OF THE BOX and look inside to see the play. I believe the future of the Republic rests in your hands. The future direction of our beloved country- the country you have risked your life for in the past depends on your Solomonic wisdom in the selection of your RUNNING MATE.

Our country is at a CROSSROADS. The country’s choice in December will affect Ghana’s future development and stability for years to come. I will dare digress for a second. The prosecution of the disciples of Jesus by Rome after his death comes to mind here. Peter the Rock of Ages, the most loyal and head of the twelve disciples was being hunted down by the Roman soldiers. As you well know, the towns in the Roman days had one main entrance for security reasons. The soldiers entered the town of APPIA where Peter was, to arrest him but he was secretly led out through a passageway to the outskirts of town onto the major highway called APPIAN WAY, to escape the brutality of the Roman soldiers. Peter had a choice, to escape the soldiers or stay fighting for what he believed in. As the story goes, Peter met his ‘APPIAN WAY” when he encountered the vision of Christ. His previous denial of Jesus despite his spiritual strength became apparent to him and he was not going to fail HIM this time- He chose to go back to the city on his CONVICTION and his FAITH. I suggest that your choice and our Party’s choice of your Running Mate or Vice Presidential candidate will be our ‘APPIAN WAY’.

Let us take a minute to look at the political map, which I know you are very familiar with indeed. I will like to indulge you Region by Region so you may see the madness in solving the equation at the beginning of this letter.

UPPER EAST REGION………………………………..NDC wins.

UPPER WEST REGION……………………………….NDC wins.

NORTHERN REGION…………………………………NDC wins.

VOLTA REGION………………………………………NDC wins.

BRONG AHAFO REGION…………………………….NPP wins.

ASHANTI REGION…………………………………….NPP wins.

EASTERN REGION…………………………………….NPP wins.

WESTERN REGION……………………………………NPP wins.

CENTRAL REGION……………………………………NDC/CPP/NPP 3way split (a non-factor)

GREATER ACCRA REGION………………………….??????????????

• The NDC wins 4 major regions. The Northern Regions and the Volta Region you will agree will go to the NDC. We must fight to make inroads there and win some parliamentary seats and also hope Obed Asamoah is able to make gains in the Volta Region to minimize the loss. The Northerners will not forgive the party this time and so there is no real gain in selecting a running mate from that area after Aliu’s poor performance.

• Ashanti, Brong-Ahafo. Eastern and Western Regions will go to NPP with very hard work needed in the Western Region.

• Central Region is very interesting and this is where you need to think outside the box. Atta Mills is a Fante and so is Nduom……the conventional wisdom is to pick a fante as well to be able to compete. If there was no Nduom I would say YES, but that is not the case here. Central Region has become a non-factor in the RACE to the Castle. It will be split three ways. The cold fact is, why waste a candidate on a region you do not need to win and are not going to. Just fight hard enough to split it three ways. If you can win the Western Region without a fante candidate, which I believe you can, then your focus ought to be on the last and not the least –GREATER ACCRA REGION- THE UNCONVENTIONAL REGION OF CHOICE TO SOLVE THE EQUATION.

Please remember that in my business model both major parties have their CASH COWS. Our task is not only to exhaustively milk our CASH COWS we must MARGINALIZE the opponents’ NET GAIN within their CASH COW areas. We MUST do so by drawing them into BATTLE on their own TURF and to exhaust their HUMAN ASSETS, LIQUID ASSETS and CAPITAL ASSETS, in their Cash Cow areas of the North, Volta and Central Regions from which we may wrest VICTORY.

Nana, I am suggesting to you, the Party Chairman-Mac Manu and the rest of party leaders and elders to pay heed to this EQUATION and re-visit Greater Accra Region as the winning region..

The Party will need a solid 60% majority in this Region come December and this effort will need a competent and solid Ga Running Mate, who you know will command such a following of the local boys and girls from Osu; La; Bukom; Nima; Teshie etc. and the rest of the middle and upper classes of both the indigenous and non indigenous segment of the population. I believe you and such a candidate can match Rawlings and his cronies pound for pound here and have a resounding win.

Now, back to the equation:

N + V = P

We know the ‘N’ now is Nana Akufo-Addo. The ‘P’ stands for the PRESIDENT-2009 The ‘V’ is for the Vice Presidential Candidate- That is the choice for you and the Party Elders to make. This cannot be a BROKERING job or you will end up picking the wrong person here who will not add to the party’s strength. As Central and the North and Volta are non-factors, so are the Ashanti, Brong Ahafo, Eastern and Western Regions.

I will jump off the cliff and dare suggest someone to you. I must admit I do not know him very well. JAKE OBETSEBI-LAMPTEY. He may have baggage that may disqualify him, but from a distance he has the following attributes;




-EFFECTIVE MINISTER? (I am not sure)

His NEUTRALIZING persona is his most potent attribute other than the NAME RECOGNITION. He is neutralizing because he is liked by the Fantes; Northerners and Voltarians, and I am yet to hear anything bad about him abroad.

Again, I do not know this man very well like I could for example say I know you or some of the other candidates. My opinion of him is from a distance and hearsay and therefore, if he is not the right candidate from the Accra region, then there is some work to be done to solve this EQUATION.

Nana, the party and country are appealing to your principles of not cowering to pressure, in making the right politically ‘selfish’ and strategic decision. You have to solve this equation for the future of the nation.

Make this decision your ‘APPIAN WAY’’.

God Bless You and Your Candidacy, God Bless NPP God Bless Oman Ghana

From: A. Kofi Afful Maryland, USA

Cc: Mack Manu NPP Chairman

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