Politics of Saturday, 24 November 2018
Newly elected National Chairman of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), Samuel Ofosu Ampofo, has suggested that it will not be a wrong decision for the party to elect former President John Mahama as its 2020 presidential candidate.
Mr. Ofosu Ampofo believes it will not be a bad idea for the NDC to retain Mr. Mahama, who caused the party’s worst electoral defeat in 2016; he virtually declared the other aspirants unfit.
Asked whether it would make sense to retain the former president, Mr. Ofosu-Ampofo stated: “It’s not a bad idea, because when you are going for an election you are looking for the most marketable personality.”
This, according to him, is because Mr. Mahama remains the most “marketable” candidate so far in the race for the NDC’s flagbearership position.
The chairman made the disclosure on Joy FM’s Personality Profile on Thursday, November 22, 2018.
In August 2018, Mr. Ofosu Ampofo declared some NDC presidential aspirants unfit for the top job.
Second Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin; former Rector of UPSA, Prof Joshua Alabi; former Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA), Sylvester Mensah; former Trade and Industry Minister, Ekwow Spio-Garbrah, have all declared their intention to contest the position.
With the exception of Mr. Bagbin, the rest of the contestants are all former appointees of ex-President Mahama.
Some of the candidates have accused the leadership of the NDC of scheming to make ex-President Mahama the flagbearer for the 2020 polls on a silver platter.
During the just-ended 9th National Delegates’ Congress of the NDC, which saw the election of Mr. Ofosu Ampofo and Johnson Asiedu Nketia, among others, Mr. Mahama was given the opportunity to address the over 8,000 delegates, while other candidates were relegated to the background.
Sources said the rest of the candidates were denied the opportunity to speak because Mr. Mahama had mostly financed the Congress.
DAILY GUIDE has gathered that some national executives of the NDC, including Mr. Ofosu Ampofo, are giving undue advantage to Mr. Mahama at the expense of the other candidates because he (Mr. Mahama) has the financial muscle and capable of ‘greasing’ their palms greatly unlike other candidates.
The congress that brought Mr. Ofosu Ampofo and other NDC executives to power was characterised by allegations of vote-buying, and it’s unclear if same would not happen during the party’s presidential election.
But Mr. Ofosu Ampofo insists that going into 2020 election against the New Patriotic Party (NPP) with a marketable candidate like former President Mahama “reduces your advertisement cost.”