Alan, Nimoh Join Nana To Crush NDC
The campaign of re-elected flagbearer of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, may have been bolstered by the strong message of solidarity and support given by his challengers in the just-concluded presidential primary.
Yesterday, his main challenger in the primary, Alan Kwadwo Kyerematen, disbanded his campaign team, instructing them to campaign for Nana Addo in earnest ahead of the 2016 presidential elections.
In a message to his supporters, Mr Kyerematen, who had about four percent of the Saturday votes, urged his supporters to let bygones be bygones.
'Dear A4P (Alan for President) Volunteer, I'm grateful for your commitment and hard work during our campaign. You did your best for me, NPP and Ghana. I humbly urge you to support Nana Akufo-Addo for the 2016 general elections. Let's win together. Keep hope alive. God bless you,' Alan stated in a message sent to his canvassers.
After the message, some of the supporters of the defeated presidential hopefuls swapped their facebook profile pictures with that of Nana Addo, in readiness to do battle with the NDC for the 2016 polls.
The man who came third in the race, Francis Addai-Nimoh, also called on Nana Akufo-Addo at his Nima residence yesterday, reassuring the latter about his unflinching support for the 2016 polls.
He was accompanied on the visit by his wife, and they had a warm reception at the hands of their host who expressed gratitude to the couple for the gesture.
'Having earlier assured you of my support at the Efua Sutherland Park, Accra last Saturday when the results of the party elections were announced, I deem it necessary to follow it up with this visit of reassurance; and accompanying me is my better-half, to borrow words. We have learnt a lot from your experience and are following your footsteps in politics,' Addai-Nimoh said.
Continuing, he noted, 'I share your vision for Ghana and would support you to realise this.'
In his response, Nana Akufo-Addo expressed gratitude for the reassurance and told his guest that his doors are open for him anytime. 'This is your home; you are free to come anytime.'
He asked Hon Addai-Nimoh to join hands with him to achieve the goals of the party.
Mr Addai-Nimoh is MP for Mampong in the Ashanti Region and his visit to Nana's residence was the first by any of the two contenders for the topmost position in the party in the aftermath of last Saturday's polls.
Nana Addo won with 94.35%, taking the top spot in all the 275 constituencies across the country, with fellow contenders, Alan Kyerematen and Francis Addai-Nimoh managing 4.75% and 0.91% votes respectively.
In all, a total of 125,726 out of the over 141,000 delegates cast their votes, of which 124, 449 were validated with the remaining 1,277 counted as rejected votes.
No Office For Flagbearer
Meanwhile, the newly-elected flagbearer may have to continue to operate from his private office located at Ridge in Accra since there is no provision for him at the party's headquarters located at Asylum Down.
The office which was originally designated for flagbearer of the party has been taken over by current National Chairman of the NPP, Paul Awentimi Afoko.
Just after the Tamale congress which ushered in the current national executives of the party, Mr Afoko, who prides himself as the 'Chairman and Leader' of the NPP, took over the flagbearer's office, deserting the official duty post designated for National Chairmen—an office that had been used by his predecessors Peter Mac Manu and Jake Otanka Obetsebi-Lamptey.
His reasons, according to sources at the party headquarters, were that the office of the National Chairman which was used by his predecessors looked too contrived and that he always felt like a prisoner whenever he went there.
Not even the advice of some senior members of the party's National Executive Committee (NEC) and Chairman of the Council of Elders would make Mr Afoko vacate the office.
When he first moved into the office, Mr Tedam was said to have advised Mr Afoko to vacate the place since it could create problems, as the place is meant for flagbearers and not National Chairmen; but he seemed to have turned a deaf ear to the counsel and continued to occupy the office.
The Chairman's office has since been allocated to the Acting Director of Finance and Administration, Edwin Tetteh, whose appointment and those of a host of others by the Paul Afoko-Kwabena Agyepong leadership of the party remain an unresolved issue.
The flagbearer's office at the NPP headquarters was established under the leadership of Jake Obetsebi-Lamptey to avoid the possibility of running a parallel structure if the flagbearer has a separate office at a different location.
The setting up of the said office which was funded with contributions of members of the Young Executive Forum (YEF), a global network of professionals and entrepreneurs in the party and those from the party's Members of Parliament (MPs), was also meant to make the flagbearer, who becomes the leader of the NPP, accessible to the party's members.
Sources at the party headquarters said it was therefore designed that the flagbearer operates from that office at least thrice every week—Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays—to plan events and campaign strategies with the national executives.
But as it stands, the flagbearer is locked out of the headquarters and may have to continue operating from his private office until a time when a new office is provided for him.
The flagbearer is meeting the national officers today and the office issue may crop up for discussion since he is now the leader of the party.
By A.R. Gomda & Charles Takyi-Boadu
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