…As He Waits For Mahama
Dr. Ekwow Spio-Garbrah, Minister of Trade and Industry, under erstwhile John Mahama-led National Democratic Congress (NDC) government, has subtly declared his intention to run for the flagbearer race of the party for the 2020 general elections.
The former minister, who once contested the party flagbearhsip but lost to late President John Evans Atta Mills, indicated that he will be doing so again on the caveat that, his former boss, ex-President John Mahama decides not to contest the party presidential primaries to lead the party in next elections.
Since the NDC lost the 2016 general elections, there have been calls from some members of the party asking the immediate former president, John Mahama, to rerun the presidential race at the next general elections.
Although Mr. Mahama did not publicly state his mind on the subject of presidency, his family members, early this year, publicly stated that, the young and affable man will no longer contest in future elections in the country.
A few months after the family statement, the former President himself has also been on record to have stated that “you leave the stage when the applause is loudest,”which sought to suggest that he preferred the public acknowledgement as a former president than to return to the race and possibly face another humiliation at the polls.
However, when asked in an interview with Accra-based private radio station, XYZ, yesterday, if in his opinion he would like Mahama to lead, or himself, Dr. Spio-Garbrah, the former Trade minister said, “That’s a premature question for me to answer… all of us appointed by Mahama, have great respect for him. We all believe we have to grant him that opportunity.”
He stressed, “He [Mahama] has the first right of refusal. My view is that all such matters is for the collective, when the time comes I’ll take it into account,”
According to former Trade minister, NDC, as a party, should be more interested in fixing the problems that led to its devastating defeat in the 2016 elections.
“Let’s work together to fix that car first or the horse that may be lame or whatever allegory people want to use. Once it is done the best driver will be decided. At this state it is early,” Dr. Spio-Garbrah advised, adding: “Everyone could have leadership potential and I can’t be excluded.”
Dr. Spio-Garbrah’s presidential ambition is not new to many Ghanaians, especially members of the NDC party since 2004.
He contested with Late Mills and others in the party’s presidential primaries, but they were all defeated by the late President, who eventually won the election in 2008.
The former minister is one of the experienced party members who command respect and have the capability to lead the NDC into the 2020 general elections.
Currently, the NDC is waiting patiently for the report of its Election Review Committee, led by Professor Kwesi Botchwey, before it could announce any other activity so far as the party’s participation in future elections is concerned.
Some personalities whose presidential ambition is also in speculation in social media are former Vice Chancellor of University for Professional Studies, Accra, Professor Joshua Alabi; former Chief Executive of the National Health Insurance Scheme, Sylvester Mensah; Second Deputy Speaker of Parliament and Member of Parliament for Nadowli/Kaleo, Hon. Alban Bagbin; former Presidential Candidate for National the Reform Party (NRP) Mr. Goosie Tanoh, and Dr. Kwabena Duffour, former Minister of Finance under Late John Mills Administration.
Other names which are also emerging but on a low key are former Vice President Paa Kwesi Amissah-Arthur; Minority leader and Member of Parliament for Tamale South; Haruna Iddrisu, former Chief Executive of Tema Oil Refinery and BOST, Kwame Awuah Darko and former Member of Parliament for La Dadekotopon, Nii Amasa Namoale.
Some political analysts and social commentators have also stated that NDC has a better chance of returning to power, but in critical point as to who leads them to that victory, in the likely situation where John Mahama refuses to come back in the race.
In their considered opinion, John Mahama remains tall and popular among all those with presidential ambitions, but should he refuse to return for the race, the NDC will be in a fixed corner in choosing a presidential candidate.
Source: therepublicnewsonline.com / Felix Engsalige Nyaaba