Deputy Communications Minister, Felix Kwakye Fosu has said there is no way the presidential candidate of the New Patriotic Party, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo will win a debate with President John Mahama.
According to him, unlike Akufo-Addo, President Mahama pays attention to detail, scrutinizes and ensures that every information he has is accurate before he puts it in the public domain and does not spew falsehood.
“I am confident that President Mahama will excel. In 2012 he [Mahama] put daylight between himself and the rest of the pack. Nana Addo was all over the place he was all about maternal mortality he said free SHS will resolve it.
“It is obvious that outside of a prepared text and script he can’t function much and even with that there clearly is a lack of detail. He doesn’t pay attention to the issues so he is unable to point out what are the glaring falsehoods presented to him,” he added.
During an interview with TV3 on Monday, President Mahama said the NPP leader had made many controversial comments about how the country is being run, indicating a debate with Akufo-Addo would unearth the truth.
“Indeed [Akufo-Addo] made a lot of contentious statements that I would have wished that you had him here, so that we would debate those issues, but essentially our parties are involved in agreeing the format of the debate, who organises it and all that, and, so, it’s not for me to say.
In a post on his twitter page, Akufo-Addo conditionally accepted the challenge for a debate saying “Will @JDMahama debating me solve #Ghana’s problems, if so then I am ready to debate him, anytime, anywhere and any day.”
Speaking on Radio Gold’s news analysis programme ‘Alhaji and Alhaji’, the deputy minister said Akufo-Addo should be able to state whether or not he wants a debate because no one can compel him to show up for one.
He said President Mahama is ready to face him and unlike the falsehood the NPP always presents, President Mahama has done due diligence and has all the facts
Citing the NPP’s real state of the nation address presented by Akufo-Addo, Kwakye Fosu said the presidential candidate presented nothing but “palpable falsehood” although most of the claims he made had been dismissed by the Finance Minister.
“He said the Ridge hospital inflated by 142 million dollars, it was a palpable falsehood, the same man stood on a platform and said we had bought diaries for 10 million dollars, a palpable falsehood, the same man said the Kasoa interchange had been inflated also a palpable falsehood.
“If he had been more thorough and was paying attention to the facts and was consulting and requesting for documents and scrutinizing same there’s no way he will commit these blunders and it does not appear he will make an effort to overcome it because he has done it over and over.
“If you take that attitude into a debate you are likely to come off worse…certainly not against a man like president Mahama, who shows thoroughness, who reviews all documents brought to him,” he continued.
Kwakye Fosu said he will not be comfortable with a debate organized by the Institute of Economic Research (IEA) because he is not impressed with their posture.
“What I am not happy about is the monopolization of that platform. Elsewhere, multiple platforms exist but there appear to be a monopoly by a civil society organization that tends to be biased in our political discourse and that is what I am not happy about.
“My positon on the IEA and their conduct is public knowledge. I have been less than impressed about their posturing, especially how they have exerted themselves into this register debate in a way that seeks to give affirmation to what is clearly unfounded positions adopted by the NPP.”
He said a debate, if indeed there will be one, should be held on a multiplicity of platforms, “preferably there should be state organisations involved as well so that the resources and leverage they have can be brought to bear in such a debate.”