General News of 2014-04-27

Afoko Snubs Akufo-Addo

Over pressures for early congress
Nana Akufo-Addo is paranoid his childhood dream of becoming president of Ghana is about to come to an end at the next New Patriotic Party (NPP) flagbearership congress. His morbid fear is borne out of the fact that he appears to be losing his grip on the party. Signals from the last NPP congress held in the northern regional capital of Tamale show he is fast losing control over the party’s affairs, as the Kufuor faction overwhelmingly dominated the national executive elections. He has thus begun taking steps to ensure he continues to hold sway in the party but appears to have hit a snag.
The Catalyst has learnt from the grapevine that the National Chairman of the NPP, Mr Paul Afoko, has rejected calls by Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, for an early congress to elect the 2016 flagbearer of the party and the twice defeated NPP flagbearer is not a happy man.
The paper can reveal that Nana Akufo-Addo, fearing his current popularity level in the party is under threat as a result of what transpired at the Tamale congress, immediately after, placed calls to Mr Afoko’s phone demanding of the newly-elected chairman to organise the 2016 flagbearership contest of the party. The Catalyst can also state that another fear Mr Akufo-Addo has is that he is broke as compared to former President Kufuor who is the moneybag of the NPP presently and this puts him in a disadvantageous position should the flagbearership contest delay, which is why he needs to make the best of his current assumed popularity level in order to clinch victory and become a third-time flagbearer of the party. This would legitimize donations party faithful and financiers would be making to him as flagbearer-elect. Mr Afoko, according to our information, however bluntly turned down the failed NPP flagbearer’s suspicious request with the excuse that he prefers to organise and restructure the party through the ‘bottom-up’ approach and not the other way round as is being prescribed by Nana Akufo-Addo, obviously for his parochial interest. This has thrown the Akufo-Addo faction into a frenzy, as it nurtures growing fears of suffering revenge from the Kufuor faction, which has obviously resumed control of affairs after the last congress, and especially on the part of Mr Afoko himself who had gone through total humiliation in the hands of the Akufo-Addo faction throughout his association with the NPP, his crime being that he is an unrepentant Kufuor-Alan ‘boy.’ It would be remembered that the Akufo-Addo faction in an orchestrated attack led by then national organiser of the party, Mr Lord Commey on Mr Afoko at the party’s 2008 flagbearership congress held in December 2007 at Legon, subjected him to severe beatings and total humiliation after claiming that he was sharing money in dollar bills to delegates on behalf of the Kufuor faction to induce them to vote for Mr Kyeremanten. Mr Afoko’s woes with the Akufo-Addo faction deepened in the run up to the recent Tamale congress which elected him as leader of the party in the absence of a flagbearer. A petition filed against him by an unnamed person in the party alleged his involvement in drugs and he was only cleared by Interpol weeks to the event. Closely on the heels of that, in order to demonstrate his open dislike for Mr Afoko, Nana Akufo-Addo, who had lived with the false belief that his grip on the party was impregnable, issued a specific statement warning Mr Afoko to desist from using his name and picture in his campaign for the chairmanship of the party. This was a clear exemption from the norm since almost all his preferred candidates were busy using his pictures and name in their respective campaigns. Considering Mr Afoko’s eventual emergence as NPP chairman as a serious threat to his presidential ambition, Nana Akufo-Addo wants the party to go for the next flagbearership congress right away because in his thinking, the longer the new executive last ahead of the congress, the less popular he could become as the Kufuor faction looks poised to having the upper hand regarding who becomes the party’s next flagbearer. Sticking to its master plan in a bid to oust the Akyem strongman for the next flagbearer position of the party, the Kufuor faction not only prefers organising the party by the bottom-up approach, as decided by Mr Afoko, but also sees it as more favourable a strategy in its resolve to produce the next NPP flagbearer. More soon