On Sunday when he and the New Patriotic Party (NPP) thanked God for their victory in the just-ended general election, president-elect Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo could not but pay a glowing tribute to party faithful who met their untimely deaths while serving the party.
Among those he singled out for specific mention was the late Vice President Alhaji Aliu Mahama, who according to Nana, “Distinguished himself in the office of Vice President of the Republic.”
Addressing a large crowd of party faithful, pastors and other people who had converged at the Accra Sports Stadium for a praise and thanksgiving service to the Lord, an emotionally charged Akufo-Addo said, “It is heart-breaking that Otanka Obetsebi-Lamptey, my childhood friend, is not here by my side today to savour the moment; it is difficult to accept that Adams Mahama, the dynamic chairman of our party in the Upper East Region, is not here with us; it is tragic my cousin and political neighbour, JB Danquah Adu, is not here with us; it is sad that the bubbly Peter Wiafe Peprah is not here; it is painful that young, bright, hardworking and cheerful Kwabena Boadu is not here with us; and that Abubakar Siddique should miss this occasion.”
But in all this, he indicated, “We remember them and many others and acknowledge the role they played to bring us this far.”
He also expressed profound gratitude to successive generations of the ‘elephant family’ who stood for freedom and justice all through Ghana’s history, sometimes at great personal cost, and who have resisted all efforts to dismember and divide their ranks, noting, “Their fortitude, their resilience, their sense of purpose are a great credit to our nation.”
It was the belief of the president-elect, “It is that spirit of sacrifice and service that inspired all the members of the campaign team, led by the tireless, able, Peter Mac Manu, the Campaign Manager; Dan Botwe, the Campaign Strategist; Edward Boateng, the Campaign Administrator and Technology Director, Joe Anokye, who planned and gave us this great victory.”
For that, he noted, “I am forever in their debt, as I am in the debt of those who went on the grueling campaign with me around the country, particularly, Alan Kyerematen and Otiko Afisa Djaba. I cannot leave out Diana Asamoah, Cindy Thompson, Agya Koo, Lucky Mensah, Praye Tenten, Praye Tiatia and all the other great stars who left their comfort zones and came on the rugged terrain of party politics and made such a great contribution to our victory.”
He also had one for the media, many of whom he said “made a determined effort to take our message to the Ghanaian people. They are part of this positive history.”
“It is always invidious to single out individuals on such an occasion, especially when there were so many who helped in diverse ways; but I hope that everyone will understand if I single out the young man whom I know is going to write a brilliant chapter in the economic history of our nation, and whom God has given to me as my vice, Mahamudu Bawumia, who made an inestimable contribution to the success of our effort,” he emphasized, looking forward to working with him for the progress of the country.
He could not help thanking their respective wives, Rebecca Akufo-Addo and Samira Bawumia, saying their contributions deserve a book of its own, whiles thanking the scores and scores of people who gave their widow’s mite to keep the NPP’s campaign afloat.
“And, today, here we are. The good, discerning and God-fearing people of Ghana have spoken resoundingly. We are grateful to God for preserving the peace of our nation through this election, despite the apprehensions and fears of many citizens. We conducted ourselves largely peacefully,” he said with smiles.
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