General News Mon, 7 May 2018
Renowned pollster, Ben Ephson has revealed that former president John Mahama is “mending fences” with executives of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) through the organization of Unity walk.Mr Ephson, the Editor of the Daily Dispatch newspaper who was speaking on the Morning Xpress on Monday stated that he has been reliably informed Mr Mahama is making peace with the party’s regional and constituency executives to make him the favourite candidate in the flagbearer race.
Former Trades Minister Ekow Spio Garbrah; former National Health Insurance Authority CEO, Sylvester Mensah; Second Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin; Professor Joshua Alabi, and Stephen Atubiga, a member of the NDC national communications team have all declared their intentions to join the flagbearership race.
But Mr Ephson who believes Mahama, though yet to declare his intentions will win when he contests noted the former president’s actions shows he will contest, a reason he has “hijacked the unity walk” to his advantage.
Mr Ephson, who came under a barrage of criticisms in 2017 after tipping then President John Mahama of winning the 2016 elections observed that in the run-up to the 2016 polls under Mahama as the president, NDC executives were sidelined and resources were not shared to the various constituencies hence Mahama’s attempt to “mend fences” with the Unity Walk.
“I must be frank. There was no synergy between the government and the party…One of the things I know for a fact is that He is trying to mend fences with people,” he clarified.
The pollster said in 2016 there was “no planning” that sought to blend the government and the party, especially when the president’s team imposed things on the regional and constituency executives during the campaign season.
To him, there are hurdles the former present will have to scale in quest to have all executives who felt sidelined when he was the president welcome him.
However, Mr Ephson said the former president remains the favourite candidate among the names that have popped up.
“If he contests, he will win… assuming that he wins, he will have the advantage of people judging what he did and what the current government is doing,” he noted.
He also said if Mr Mahama is elected to lead the NDC, he will have a disadvantage of people judging him of “fracturing the party” under his stewardship, so he has taken the opportunity to “try and explain and try to let them (sidelined executives come on board” and support his candidature.