The New Patriotic Party (NPP) first issued a caveat to all of its members who are nursing presidential aspirations to desist from canvassing for votes until official lifting of internal partisan campaigning for any position, including that of the party’s presidential nomination.
When it became obvious many aspirants were flouting the initial order, the party at an extra-ordinary National Executive meeting on Thursday, December 9th, 2021, reiterated its position on the matter and even threatened to sanction any such aspirants who will continue to break the directive.
The latest warning comes just at the heels of the NPP’s National Delegates Congress in Kumasi this weekend; and that is suggestive that the party would not spare any potential aspirant, whose supporters would be campaigning at the delegates congress grounds. The President of the Republic, Akufo Addo, also seemed to have strengthened the resolve of the party’s executives.
According to the President, he would not hesitate sacking any minister who openly canvasses for votes at the impending congress and for that matter, any other areas or places of the country. He urged ministers and other appointees in his administration who wish to engage in partisan politics, to do the needful by resigning.
The Kumasi congress is to set out modalities that will define the conducts of the party’s presidential and other executive positions and also consider, those who qualify as delegates in any of the NPP primaries, starting from 2022, through to 2023. But the nagging question has been, what will happen to Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, if his supporters still continue to do his presidential bidding in the open?
Will he be asked to resign or be sacked from the administration by the President? Within the period-January, 2021 to date, Dr. Bawumia’s presidential bidding has hit the spot-light, for both good and bad reasons. His supporters were the first to give clear indication Dr. Bawumia will contest the NPP presidential nomination.
That was at a time the party was even yet to recover from the near-shock and hang-over from the 2020 elections. The NPP was no where near even discussing the prospect of a presidential candidate, let alone to consider a filing date for nomination; yet the Bawumia zealots made that false start.
That was a bold statement that Dr. Bawumia will thickly be involved in the NPP’s flagbearer-ship contest. So in a scenario where other presidential hopefuls like Alan Kyerematen, and Dr. Afriyie Akoto are resigning to concentrate on their presidential aspirations, will as stated, the Vice President also resign?
The position of the Vice President is protected by the constitution; and until proven incapable through sickness or gross misconduct, none can remove a sitting Vice President from office. So will the Vice President then decide on his own volition to resign and concentrate on his presidential ambitions? Or will he still hang-on till the party lifts the ban on internal partisan politics?
Until then, will he be watching on while his competitors, some of who may have resigned from their positions in government crisscross the country campaigning? There is the temptation that the Vice President may also join in the fray to campaign even if the NPP has not lifted the ban.
Will the party and for that matter the President have the muscle to reprimand or ask the Vice President to resign and concentrate on his presidential bidding? Will any such action, which is an extreme case scenario, be permitted under the country’s constitution which supersede any other unit constitution of the land?
What will be the reaction of the others who may have resigned their government positions seeing the Vice President campaigning without resigning his position? Perhaps, that will be a little immunity that the Vice President may enjoy by virtue of his position in the national order of governance.
Former Vice President, Alhaji Aliu Mahama enjoyed same leverage when he vied for the NPP presidential nomination in 2008. He was the sitting Vice President for John Agyekum Kufuor at the time. This is the harsh conundrum that confronts Dr. Bawumia and his presidential dream.
The Vice President’s pubic campaign posters started dominating the skylines before that of Alan Kyerematen, Dr. Afriyie Akoto, Joe Ghartey and Boakye Agyarko started circling. Among the lots, it’s only Joe Ghartey, who as early as January this year, declared an intent of contesting for the NPP presidential ticket. The President thus excluded him from any possible ministerial appointment.
Party stakeholders and their preferred choices
It may not have manifested in the open; but party insiders have hinted this author of the preferred choices of party kingpins, including the President of the Republic. The President is said to be the strongest backer of the presidential bid of the Vice President.
On his tour of the North East Region, which co-incidentally is the home region of the Vice President, early this year, the President revealed subtly his support for his Vice President. The President was accompanied on that trip by Dr. Bawumia. Of course, from now on to the date of the NPP presidential primary, any combined move by the two is likely to be interpreted by supporters of other presidential aspirants with political lenses.
It was on the North East tour, precisely at Wawale, the hometown of Dr. Bawumia that President Akufo Addo applauded Dr. Bawumia as a “First Class Assistant”; in the current 4th Republic. That’s by any stretch, Dr. Bawumia in the opinion of the President, towers above all other 4th Republican Vice Presidents.
Our Vice Presidents since the inception of the 4th Republic include, Nenyi Kow Nkensen Arkaah, Prof. John Evans Atta Mills, John Dramani Mahama and Papa Kwesi Bekoe Amissah-Arthur. Such suspicion, (President’s support for Bawumia) hitherto assumed a loud silence within the NPP, until the President in a rather bizarre twist, posited the strengths of his Trade Minister at the Manhyia Palace of all places and Elmina, the maternal hometown of Mr.AlanKyerematen.
Isn’t that significant and a possible shift in the support base of the President? Those flowery words on the performance of Mr. Kyerematen by the President set tongues wagging in the NPP as to who really the President supports in the NPP presidential race.
Alan Kyerematen, is a long time protégé of former President John Agyekum Kufuor and draws his support from many former public officials in the Kufuor Administration. It won’t be too surprising his presidential bidding is being assented to by the former President.
Source : myvoicenews.com