It’s more of an unwritten convention. The end of any given election begins in earnest, preparations for the succeeding one. So the 2020 elections end, and almost every politician, especially those from the two leading parties has firm gaze on the 2024 election.
Perhaps the issue which is forcing the political discourse from building up this early stage of 2021, is the decision by the NDC/John Mahama to challenge the final presidential verdict of the 2020 election, as posted by the Electoral Commission (EC), at the Supreme Court.
The Supreme Court is expected to deal with the NDC petition by the close of February this year and that will pave the way for interested stakeholders, who for the moment are operating on the fringes to be open about their intentions.
That notwithstanding, the professional politicians are all busy albeit quietly, setting their targets and sights for the 2024 elections. Election 2024 might be four long years away from now; yet some aspirants are circling, trying to build solid bases within their parties.
One of such candidates is Dr. Alhaji Mahmudu Bawumia, the Vice President. Credible hints given by close associates and aides show that the Vice President has eyes firmly sighted for the NPP presidential nomination in 2024.
According to NPP insiders, Dr. Bawumia’s his underground works toward that ambition even before the 2020 election with NPP National Organiser, Sammi Awuku as his unofficial campaign manager.
Sammi Awuku, our sources disclosed, has secured offices throughout every constituency in the country to help with Bawumia’s NPP presidential nomination bid.
Attempts to catch delegates and officials early enough
Often candidates that can get along with party delegates and officials are the ones with the highest chances of picking parties’ presidential nominations. Of course resources and funds count; but such attractive pegs can only be a complement to the effort and sacrifices made by prospective candidates in identifying with party stakeholders.
And that is exactly what Bawumia and his team are doing. Both the NPP and NDC are likely to pick their party officials at all levels by 2022 and although it’s a competitive bidding, aspirants who want to vie for presidential nomination of their parties would need to acquaint themselves with potential winners of party positions and others who may qualify as party delegates.
It’s such officials who manage every stage of the party machinery that qualify as members of a party election caucus and therefore have the mandate to vote to select presidential candidates. NPP anticipate tense internal presidential nomination
In the case of the NPP, the internal struggle for party positions and that of presidential nomination will be intense as the case has been for any party running a 2nd term office.
With the sitting president barred by the constitution from running a 3rd term office, the electoral field becomes plain and evenly disposed to every individual wishing for a shot at the party’s presidential nomination, to do so.
It’s also the period where party chiefs, including the sitting President do not shy away from supporting their preferred candidates. Often the President tries to play a rallying point in the public eye, but it ends up being an eye pleasing gesture. In the end, their real intentions are exposed.
Rawlings & Kufour’s respective presidential choices in 2000 and 2008
Perhaps it was only former President Rawlings who breached the cover-up support to openly endorse the candidature of his Vice-Prof. John Evans Atta Mills as his successor in the infamous Swedru Declaration of 1998.
Rawlings’ unilateral decision led to a serious fracture within the NDC. Some of the party’s middle class group, led by Augustus Goosie Tanoh, broke away to form the Reform Party which invariably, weakened the support base of the NDC.
Some of the finest young men who seceded with Goosie included Kyeretwie Opoku, Majie Barnor, Osei-Wusu, Larry Adjetey and a host of others. A similar scenario played up in the NPP in the last stages of the 2nd term of President John Agyekum Kufuor.
Although the President would not play it exactly as Rawlings did it, nonetheless, Kufuor’s proxy support for Alan Kwado Kyerematen was glaringly known within and outside of the NPP.
In all, some 17 candidates, including the current President, slugged it out for the 2008 presidential nomination of the NPP.
Akufo Addo and his support for Bawumia 2024
Highly placed sources in the NPP have hinted this writer of Nana Addo’s support for the presidential bid of his Vice-Alhaji Dr. Mahmudu Bawumia.
This was corroborated by other multiple sources within the NPP, with other credible political watchers affirming the high possibility of the President’s support for his Vice.
Many believe the Vice President has been so loyal to the President that the only reward Nana Akufo Addo can offer him is to back his (Bawumia’s ) bid for the presidential nomination of the NPP.
Dr. Bawumia has been an Akufo Addo loyalist since 2008, when the NPP chose him to partner Nana Akufo Addo for the NPP’s presidential ticket and never wavered in the face of the odds and adversity that the NPP and Akufo had in the 2012 election.
He showed that during NPP’s presidential election petition with an outright commitment and loyalty to the cause of the NPP. Analysts argue that perhaps it’s only Dr. Bawumia who has shown some readiness as a Vice President to step up to the presidency with a strength in analysing issues especially, matters relating to the economy.
However, there are others who have described Dr. Bawumia’s mastery of the economy as a colourful theoretical dose that fails to address the lapses in our economy leading to the stilt growth of the Ghanaian economy.
By Richmond Keelson