Can ex-President Kufuor ever be neutral in the NPP?

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Thu, 16 Oct 2014 Source: Bokor, Michael J. K.

By Dr. Michael J.K. Bokor

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

I want to wonder aloud: Why should ex-President Kufuor swerve both Kyerematen and Akufo-Addo?

As has been reported, “Former President John Agyekum Kufuor has revealed that he will not vote for any of the candidates contesting the flagbearership race in the national delegates congress of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) on Sunday. Kufuor, who was president from 2001 to 2008, refrained from voting in the party’s super delegates congress in August, stressing the need to preserve his neutrality.

Speaking to Citi News, the spokesman for the former President, Frank Agyekum, said Mr. Kufuor believes the best thing for him to do at this point in time in the NPP’s scheme of things is not to cast his vote, but rather stay behind and give his support to whoever wins.” (See: https://www.ghanaweb.com/GhanaHomePage/NewsArchive/artikel.php?ID=330326) Folks, the NPP camp has been torn apart over the years, apparently because of factionalism pitted around Alan Kyerematen and Akufo-Addo. Rumours have been peddled that former President Kufuor favours Kyerematen and not Akufo-Addo. Such rumours have been dispelled by Kufuor and his spokespersons but have refused to die down and out. They still circulate that Kufuor isn't an Akufo-Addo admirer. Akufo-Addo himself has gone to the length of making utterances to suggest that he and Kufuor have been on very good terms and that Kufuor supported in in his two ill-fated previous bids to become Ghana's President. Caught in the centre of this jostling, ex-President Kufuor has taken the unusual path of "neutrality", which translates into his abstaining from participating in the elections to choose the NPP's Presidential Candidate for Election 2016. He didn't vote in the super-delegates conference to prune down the candidates to 5.

Now, he has chosen not to vote again at the October 18 congress to elect the flagbearer, apparently in pursuit of his agenda to remain neutral. Is this decision to abstain the wisest thing for Kufuor to do? NOOOOOOOOOO!! Is Kufuor politically neutral only at this point in the internal politics of the NPP, internal politics that has been poisoned by Akufo-Addo and his followers to the extent as to brand any dissenting party member as a traitor to be gored out of existence?

Is Kufuor being honest to himself and those in the NPP looking up to him to bring some sanity to bear on goings-on, granted that he is the only one to have uplifted the party from the 30 years’ political wilderness that it had been before the run-off elections in 2000 turned the tide? Who says that he doesn't have his preference? He does, and he knows it deep down his "Gentle Giant hulk" that he has his sympathies and ardent support for one of the three contestants. By choosing to abstain under the cloak of "neutrality", he has rather betrayed his hidden interests. After all, won't the elections be "SECRET", meaning that no one will know the candidate for whom he would have voted unless he himself blabs it out? Folks, do you see how these NPP people do politics to expose their underbellies? Kufuor is being hypocritical here. He is rather thickening the cloud of suspicion against him. What he needs to know is that by abstaining, he is giving an ambivalent impression about himself and his future within the NPP.

Claiming to be doing so in readiness to support whoever wins the bid is hollow. Couldn't he have done so all the same if his preferred candidate lost after he had voted? A true statesman won't take this short cut to run away from responsibility and the truth. The NPP will not be the same after the October 18 congress, which is why bigwigs like Kufuor must brace themselves up for the fallouts and not create any smokescreen of neutrality to hide behind. Why is Kufuor so easily predictable?

I shall return…

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Columnist: Bokor, Michael J. K.