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Tuesday, July 27, 2010


… As Greater Accra, B/A bubble with party activities
News Desk report
Nana Akufo-Addo(L) and Mr. Alan Kyerematen
With barely two weeks to the much talked about National Delegates Congress of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), to elect a new flag bearer to lead the party, two of the front runners- Nana Addo Danquah Akuffo-Addo and Alan Kwadwo Kyerematen, have intensified their campaigns to win the hearts and votes of the party’s delegates.
Whilst Nana Addo, who led the party in the 2008 elections, is currently making waves in the Accra Metropolis, Mr. Kyerematen, who gave him a good run for his money during the 2007 congress,  held at the University of Ghana in Accra, is also wooing delegates in the Brong Ahafo region.
Both candidates have adopted populist approaches to their campaigns, by moving from one market place to the other, where they are attracting huge crowds.
In Accra, our correspondent reports that Nana Akufo-Addo’s humble appeal to supporters of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) to stop the “NO NANA, NO VOTE” slogan,  seems to have fallen on deaf ears, as more party supporters continue to chant the same message throughout his Greater Accra tour.
The slogan, which began in the Central Region, when Nana Akufo-Addo commenced his National Campaign tour, in his bid to lead the NPP, has obviously peaked in Accra.
Nana Akufo-Addo’s Victory 2012 Campaign Team have been met everywhere in the capital with the “NO NANA, NO VOTE” chorus.  The slogan, according to most party activists, has become necessary, in order to send a clear message to all delegates across the country that Nana Akufo-Addo is their preferred choice.
They contend that the reason for sticking to the slogan, despite calls by Nana Akufo-Addo himself to desist from it, is to make their message clear to all delegates across the entire nation, before they make any a wrong choice for the party.
A trader at the Kaneshie Market, Nana Hemaa, said the “NO NANA, NO VOTE’’ slogan must continue till the day of the contest, since some delegates have forgotten about Nana Akufo-Addo’s contribution and loyalty tothe development of NPP over the years. She continued that -“Nana’s performance in the last elections clearly shows that he would repeat the record that former President Kufour set in the year 2000, when he was selected after being presented for the second time.”
“If the NPP delegates fail to elect Nana Akufo-Addo as Flag bearer on August 7, I’m afraid the party will stay in opposition for long’’ she said.
A Petty trader at the Okaishie market also remarked that the NPP would lose the votes of her entire family of nine in the 2012 general election, if the party presents any candidate apart from Nana Akufo-Addo.
She argued that Nana Akufo-Addo has been well marketed and must, therefore, be allowed to contest the next general election again, due to the high number of votes he pulled for the party in the 2008 election. “If the NPP delegates change Nana, then my family and I, including other people would not vote at all,” she said.
In the Ledzorkuku constituency, as has been the case in many other places across the country, Nana Akufo-Addo and his Team were met with dozens of placards, with messages such as -“NO NANA, NO VOTE”, ‘‘WITHOUT NANA, FORGET ABOUT 2012”, “NANA IS OUR ONE AND ONLY”, and “WE WANT NANA”.
Mr. Richard Obiri Yeboah, the Adenta Constituency Chairman disclosed that he and his entire executives will vote for Nana Akufo-Addo in the August 7 Contest, because all over Adenta and its environs, what the majority of the party supporters keep saying is -“NO NANA, NO VOTE”.
He continued that “we are in office because of the people. When we go out, the only thing supporters tell us is “NO NANA, NO VOTE”. As responsible leaders who want to see the NPP back in power in 2012, we consider it a duty to party and country, to work for Nana in the constituency.”
Kennedy Agyepong
The Member of Parliament for Assin North, Hon. Kennedy Ohene Agyepong, also called on the delegates to “vote for Akufo-Addo, as that will be a vote for Ghana’s future.” He observed that “it is obvious today that the Ghanaians have already had enough of the sluggish NDC administration and want the NPP to come back to power, and to provide them with a strong, purposeful and visionary leadership that will improve their living standards.
Amongst the five aspirants, Nana Akufo-Addo is the one who can win us the power in 2012. Everywhere you go in the country, his name is the one that the people are mentioning.”
He continued that “it is also important for the party to recognise and reward hard work, loyalty and commitment to the cause of the party over the years, and I know that none of the aspirants can match Akufo-Addo in that regard.”
He recounted how instrumental Nana Akufo-Addo was in the formation of the NPP and how he has invested all his time, energy and resources to ensure the establishment and growth of the party.  “Those who show their faces when things get difficult need to be rewarded when the time comes and I have no doubt in my mind that this is Akufo-Addo’s time,” he said.
He explained how Nana Akufo-Addo invested his time and money to ensure that the Electoral College of the party is expanded to include polling station executives.
Nana Akufo-Addo, he said, has since 1998 been advocating for the expansion of the party’s Electoral College in order to allow the power of the party to be at the grass roots.
He noted that “we are all gathered here in our numbers today because of the vision of Nana Akufo-Addo. He has recognised the role you the grass roots play in the party and has led the crusade for you to become delegates of the party.On August 7, remember that the one who gave you the power is the one who has good intentions for you and our nation.”
He said that it would be inimical to the growth of the party, if anybody who has served his or her time in the service of the party, to try and impose another person on the party. “So if you don’t have a Godfather in the party, your hard work and service will not be recognised. I think it is a bad proposition and we have to stand up against it, and vote for the one who has been with us throughout the time,” he noted.
He also called on the delegates to consider Nana Akufo-Addo’s vast political experience and his performance in the 2008 general election. The political atmosphere, according to him currently favors only Nana Akufo-Addo, partly because of his commitment to the party’s cause over the years, and partly because of his impressive 49.8% performance in the 2008 general election.
Alan in Nkoranza
From Nkoranza, in the Brong-Ahafo region, our regional correspondent,  Michael Boateng, reports that  Mr. Alan Kyerematen took his ‘Change is Coming’ campaign to Nkoranza and managed to win the hearts of many of the enthusiastic delegates.
From Kintampo, through Busunya, Jema to Nkoranza, the responses that greeted Kyerematen’s messages were convincing enough for political analysts to give the former Trade Minister a slight edge over his closest rival, in the upcoming August 7 congress.
Typical of him, Kyerematen made time to shake hands with majority of people who got close to him, and had a word of encouragement and hope for all. He told the delegates that the time has come for the party to be led by an energetic and action oriented person, whose charisma can regain power for the NPP.
“The NPP needs a man whose charisma can win a ‘one touch’ victory in 2012 and Alan Kyerematen is the man you can trust to deliver victory for the NPP”, he said, amid cheering by the delegates. He urged the delegates to disregard any talk of disunity in the party and rather focus on how best to unseat the NDC in 2012.
“If any body comes to you with talk of disunity, tell the person he is a liar, and that freedom of expression and association does not mean division in the NPP”, he said to the admiration of delegates and party supporters. Alan Kyerematen pointed out that polling station executives must be the prime focus of the party in regaining power, since they play crucial role on Election Day.
He further announced the establishment of a fund for polling station executives, who he admitted had been neglected in the past. He assured the delegates that an NPP under his leadership would bring a lot of benefits, since he has the track record of successes.
Kwabena Agyapong
At Techiman, a former presidential spokesperson in the Kufour administration, Kwabena Agyei Agyepong, described Alan Kyerematen as a bright star for the future of the party, and urged delegates to massively endorse his candidature, to enable the NPP regain power from the non performing NDC.
“I wish to put it on record that Alan Kyerematen is the bright star for the future of the NPP, and you delegates have the responsibility to elect him at the up coming congress, to ensure the NPP regains power in 2012, and to fix the economy being mismanaged by the NDC”, he said.
Kwabena Agyepong, a key member of ‘Team Alan’ campaign, was addressing delegates separately at Seikwa, Nsawkaw, Wenchi, Krobo, and Techiman all in the Brong-Ahafo region, to wrap up his nationwide campaign tour.
Obviously overwhelmed by the enthusiastic response from the delegates, Kwabena Agyepong recounted the sterling qualities of Kyerematen and his immense contributions to the party from the formative years, and charged the delegates to think of the future of the party and select him as the flagbearer for the 2012 elections.
“Alan Kyerematen has everything to his advantage to recapture power for the NPP and we can not afford to make a mistake by selecting any other candidate apart from him. He is young, charismatic, affable, energetic, action oriented and has the ability to raise successful business people to push the economy forward”, he said.
On his part, Alan Kyerematen reminded the delegates that the party needs a candidate who would secure a first round victory for the party in 2012. “We must go into the 2012 elections with a candidate who can give us a one touch victory and Alan Kyerematen is the best person for us to realize that dream”, he told the delegates.
He added that all around the world, the present generation is being led by young, ambitious and action oriented leaders, and Ghana must not be left out of that positive trend.
Meanwhile, some of the delegates who spoke to The Chronicle expressed optimism of the NPP winning hands down in 2012, with Kyerematen as the flag bearer.
Asked for their reasons, they told The Chronicle that Ghanaian voters sent a signal to the party about the type of candidate they preferred in 2008, and that they can not make another mistake. They were of the view that the Ghanaian voter must be taken into consideration when electing the party’s flag bearer.

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