By Melvin Tarlue
Some individuals believed to be supporters or members of the NPP are beginning to push for Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia to succeed incumbent President Nana Akufo-Addo.
Threats of not voting for the NPP in the December 7, 2024 general elections if Dr. Bawumia is not made the presidential candidate of the NPP, have already started surfacing even before January 7, 2021, when Mr Akufo-Addo is expected to be sworn-in for the last time as President of Ghana.
Reports already have it that a group of female supporters of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) in the Ashanti Region, has called on the party to nominate Dr. Bawumia as its presidential candidate for the 2024 general elections, this could best be seen as a subtle way of wishing to ensure that at all cost Dr. Bawumia becomes the next Flagbearer even if the majority of NPP’s supporters do not want him as their presidential candidate.
Some individuals have sought to play on the heritage of the NPP, saying the Busia and Danquah ‘quarters’ of the NPP have had the opportunity to become presidents and now it’s left for the Dombo ‘quarter’ to which Dr. Bawumia rightfully belong, to become a president.
Don’t get me wrong, I am in no way seeking to say Dr Bawumia is not a good presidential candidate material.
But I strongly feel as a party that claims to believe in democracy, it ought to be stated that the NPP should allow a free, fair and credible voting process during its 2024 primaries. Members or groups in the NPP should allow democracy to triumph and not seek to reward a particular camp.
Attempts to once again ‘impose’ a candidate on members and supporters of the party be it in the parliamentary or presidential primaries could be detrimental to the NPP’s chances in the December 7, 2024 general elections.
The ruling NPP ought to learn from the Fomena mistake and allow its candidates to be elected through a free, fair, and credible electoral process.
If indeed any candidate seeking to contest the primaries in 2024 is a favorite of the mass of the NPP supporters and members, let that be shown in the ‘genuine’ or ‘legal’ votes to be cast by the delegates. Any attempt to manipulate results in favor of any candidate should be nipped in the bud.
The primaries in 2024 must be democratic and not tribalistic. Every part of the country must matter in the primaries.
In 2024, the primaries should not be about rewarding the north or the south. The primaries should not be about rewarding a particular candidate because he or she is from the Central or Greater Accra Region. The primaries should be about promoting democracy and respecting the will of the people.
The victory of the Fomena MP-elect, Andrew Amoako Asiamah, who went independent after being sacked from the NPP should be taking into consideration when making decisions that could seek to deny some members of the NPP their constitutional right of being voted for.
The 2020 elections generally should be a lesson to the NPP and its primaries going forward should be democratic i.e. free, fair, credible and transparent and that candidates should not be imposed on supporters of the party moving forward. There should be a level playing field or in other words, every aspirant be it presidential or parliamentary should be treated fairly.
The December 7, 2020 general elections unarguably marked the first time the NPP had emerged a winner with just a slim majority of Parliamentary seat (NPP 137, NDC 136) and the Fomena MP-elect who has one seat as an independent candidate. The party should learn from this.