Analysis: Is the NPP’s Paul Afoko setting a time-bomb all too soon? – Asks Dr Michael J.K. Bokor

The writer, Dr Michael J.K. Bokor
The writer, Dr Michael J.K. Bokor

Folks, the NPP camp seems to be preparing itself for an implosion as comments coming from its bigwigs seem not to be aimed at unifying the factions but rather solidifying their differences.

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When I say that these NPP people do sterile “book politics”, its buffs shoot their mouths at me. Here is what I foresee as a time-bomb being set:

“National Chairman of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Paul Afoko says there is the possibility of the party going to a presidential primary by the end of this year with only one candidate.

Mr. Afoko stated, however, that, as a democratic party full of free-thinkers, NPP will allow the tenets of democracy to inform every decision it takes ahead of the 2016 general elections.

Mr. Afoko, who was elected chairman of the party on April 12, made this known on TV3’s News @ 10 on Wednesday, April 23.”



There is nothing wrong with the choice of a “compromise candidate” as the Presidential candidate, especially if that candidate is a “presidential material” who can outclass opponents contesting general elections.

But there is a lot wrong with any decision to impose a candidate on the party, especially when indications are clear that vested interests exist.

In the case of the NPP, much is happening to suggest that presenting one candidate “unopposed” won’t go down well with those who have taken an entrenched position against that choice.

It is not difficult to guess who such an unopposed candidate may be, especially considering utterances from the camp of Akufo-Addo to suggest that he is the most popular personality in the NPP.

But Akufo-Addo is not without internal opposition. He has opponents who have eagerly expressed interest in the flagbearership and are now going round mobilizing support for the December congress. Choosing him as “unopposed” will stir up a revolution in the party unless Kyerematen and the 7 others gearing up to contest the flagbearership recant. I wonder if they will.

Scathing criticism against Akufo-Addo as “unappealing” and, therefore, incapable of wooing floating voters is rife. He is also portrayed as divisive and not capable of securing victory for the NPP.

Some critics have been quick to point to the downturn in his performances at Election 2008 (when he polled 49.7%) and Election 2012 (when he polled just above 47%) to buttress their claim that he cannot win Election 2016., especially when factors such as his age and others are considered.

Such claims make it all the more imperative for any thought of imposing Akufo-Addo on the party to be re-considered. But once those rooting for him make up their minds, no amount of prayers or reasonable entreaties will deter them from crossing the Rubicon to their electoral doom. Such are they.

If such a candidate cannot endear himself to the hearts of floating voters, there will be no need to impose him on the party and throw everything into disarray. But it seems those bent on putting him forward prefer disarray to electoral success. Let them set the ball rolling, then.

In any case, it will be a tall order for them, which is why Paul Afoko’s utterance at this time should be scrutinized for what it is: a time-bomb being set in the camp of the NPP!!

I shall return…

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