Former President John Dramani Mahama has said the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) cannot use the 2020 election for ‘experimentation’ purposes, as the party’s foot soldiers are not ready to wait until 2024 to win back power from the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP), MyNewsGh.com can report.
Mr Mahama was speaking at a campaign stop in the North Tongu constituency where the party’s delegates waited for hours into the night in order to meet him. MyNewsGh.com has been covering Mr Mahama’s tour of the country and reporting accordingly.
Addressing the NDC supporters after their MP, Hon Okudzeto Ablakwa spoke to them in Ewe, Mr Mahama said he is the only candidate NPP and Akufo-Addo “fear”.
“Every day Mahama. Mahama this, Mahama that. Whatever happens, they say Mahama. Have you seen them talking about any of the other people?” I am the candidate they fear” he told the cheering delegates.
Mr Mahama said he has heard of a school of thought that is suggesting NDC picks a new face for 2020 with the ultimate target being 2024 by which time the new face has been marketed and can win. According to him, such a proposal is a “No no”. The crowd cheered in agreement.
He asked the delegates if they wanted 2020 to be a “try and see” election and responded in the negative.
“My name is John Dramani Mahama.. I have filed my nomination to run for flagbearer. And on February 23rd we will choose who will lead us to 2020.” He said.
“I believe that the time to take back power from the NPP is 2020, not 2024. Some want us to go and try and see. They say let’s us pick a fresh face and when we go and we don’t win he has been marketed… And then he can come again in 2024”.
“No no no Nooo nooooo” he himself retorted as the crowd clapped in agreement.
“We are taking back power in 2020 and we don’t want any try and see” he continued.
“I have come here to present myself to you. Many places I go they say President Mahama we know you, even of you don’t need to come, we will vote for you. but to whom honour is due, honour is given. So I have come to present myself to you.” He rapped.
Mahama will get 30% — Bagbin
Another NDC flagbearer hopeful who is Second Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Alban Sumana Kingsford Bagbin last month predicted that former president John Dramani Mahama will get only 30% of the votes in the upcoming election for a flagbearer of the NDC.
In an interview on Accra based 3FM on 22nd January, 2019, Alban Bagbin stated confidently that nobody amongst the seven candidates running for the leadership of the NDC will be able to attain the 50% required by the party’s constitution to confirm a legitimate flagbearer.
The NDC primary was originally scheduled to come off on Friday, December 7, 2018, in accordance with the constitution of the party to elect a flagbearer exactly two years to the presidential elections, if it is in opposition. But misunderstandings over the nomination and filing fees for the flagbearer aspirants forced a change in the scheduled January 26, 2019.
An injunction filed by two members of the party nearly forced an indefinite suspension of the primary, but for an out-of-court agreement reached in court.
Alban Bagbin served as a Housing Minister in the erstwhile National Democratic Congress led by John Dramani Mahama and has been a parliamentarian since 1992.