As the NDC heads to congress in December this year to elect their flagbearer for the 2020 election, there is no doubt that Former President Mahama represents the ONLY hope for the party if it is to return to power in 2021.
Below are nine simple reasons why.
1. MOST POPULAR CANDIDATE: Of all the names that have cropped up as wanting to lead the NDC, Mahama is by far the most popular. He has the best name and face recognition nationwide and thus marketing him to Ghanaians later on in the general election would be easier for the NDC. Even a child in Enchi in the Western Region, Taviefe in the Volta Region or Akroso in the Eastern Region knows the name Mahama and can identify the face easily. The other wannabes are known in only Accra, Tema, a few towns and on social media.
2. LESS EXPENSIVE MARKETTING MAHAMA: Because he is the most popular person in the NDC and in fact the most popular Ghanaian (according to joyfmonline poll in 2017), it would be less expensive marketing him. The NDC would have to spend perhaps ten times more marketing any of the other candidates.
3. FINANCE: Businessmen are more likely to fund a party with a presidential candidate who is likely to win an election than one who they are not sure about. The business community in Ghana and elsewhere will surely be more confident financing the campaign of the NDC when Former President Mahama is the flagbearer than any of the others because of the high possibility of him winning the 2020 election. No businessman would want to dump his money in a worthless venture.
4. NO SCANDAL: Having been Vice-President and President before, he has been the target of the opponents of the NDC on several occasions. There is therefore nothing new the opponents of the NDC can say about him that will be damaging to the fortunes of the NDC in the 2020 elections.
Same cannot be said of the other candidates. Any of them may have skeletons in their wardrobe which when revealed may doom the chances of the party winning the 2020 elections.
5. MOST EXPERIENCED CAMPAIGNER: Mahama has had the experience of campaigning nationwide first as a Running mate and twice (2012 and 2016) as flagbearer of the party. This experience is important as he knows what to do and how to campaign to win the election in 2020. The others have no such experience. On the campaign trail, they would be more of learners than anything else, committing errors of first timers.
6. BETTER CAPACITY TO WIN: It does not take an average Joe to win a national election. One must have the capacity to do so. Rawlings won the 1992 and 1996 elections because he had built his capacity right from June 4, 1979 when he sprung unto the political stage through the days of the PNDC. Kufuor had to go through defeats in 1992 (at the NPP primaries) and 1996 in the general election to win it finally in 2000. The late Atta-Mills has to taste defeat in 2000 when he was Vice-President and then again in 2004 before he had the capacity to win it in 2008. Akufo Addo won in 2016 only after three abortive attempts; 1998, 2008 and 2012. Mahama got the nod in 2012 after years of being an MP, a Deputy Minister, a Minister, a Vice-President and a President for six months. Added to the fact that he was the NDC’s flagbearer in the 2016 elections, it is only he among the lot who has the capacity to win the 2020. The other flagbearer aspirants in the NDC have no such gravitas. Electing any of them for 2020 is choosing the path of defeat in advance.
7. TRACK RECORD: Mahama raised the bar for all subsequent Presidents of Ghana with his performance when he was President of Ghana from 12012 to 2016. His achievements in all sectors of the economy especially in the areas of health, education, transport, energy and infrastructure has resulted in many Ghanaians having nostalgic memories of his administration as the Akufo-Addo administration continues to fail to deliver. Mahama therefore has the track record the NDC can campaign on to win the 2020 election. None of the names being mentioned as his competitors have any such track record.
8. CLAMOUR FOR MAHAMA: Anyone who listens to the conversations going on in the markets, work places, lorry stations, in vehicles, etc would realize that Ghanaians in general are clamouring for the return of Former President Mahama. Even many die-hard NPP supporters have opined that he is far better a President that Akufo-Addo and for the sake of national development want him back at the Flag Staff House. Many who did not vote for him are openly confessing that voting him out in 2016 was a terrible mistake. So the difference here is that while the other aspirants want to lead the NDC, it is NDC supporters and others who are not necessarily NDC who want Mahama back. The more, the merrier.
9. NPP FEAR OF MAHAMA: Already, indications are that the NPP is panicking at the prospects of Mahama leading the NDC into the 2020 election. This has culminated in Nana Obiri Boahene, a Deputy General Secretary of the ruling party pleading on Okay FM with his party members not to panic at the prospects of Mahama leading the NDC into the 2020 elections. There is no doubt that the NPP is panicking because of Mahama and that is good for the NDC. In the weeks ahead, their fear of Mahama will see an increase in attack on his personality (and that of his family members). Pro-NPP media houses will lead the attack. Expect fake prophecies sponsored by the NPP and fake stories about him to make its way especially on to social media. The ‘icing on the cake’ would be that the ruling NPP government would reach out to some persons within the NDC to lead the attack on Mahama. All these would be the manifestation of the fear of the former President which is good for the NDC. There would probably be no such attack on the other aspirants because the NPP has no fear of any of them. They would be wishing that one of them would rather lead the NDC into the 2020 election because they can easily deal with him. The delegates of the NDC cannot and would not make the mistake of granting the NPP its wish with a weak aspirant they can easily handle. 2020 is a must win election for the party!
History has shown that it is possible for a President who lost an election to be re-elected by the same people who failed to vote for him. President Matheiu Kerekou of Benin was defeated at the polls in 1991. In 2001, he won the national election to become President once again.
President Sebastian Pinera of Chile was defeated at the polls in 2013. After just four years, he returned to win the national election (in 2017) and is therefore Chile’s current President. History is therefore on the side of Mahama with the capacity, experience, popularity, goodwill and track record at his disposal to win 2020 for the NDC and himself. The delegates of the party must therefore have no doubt about the only person who can bring the party victory. It is no time to try a person. Trying somebody is already costing the nation.
SOURCE: DAILY POST