Special Aide to former President John Mahama, Ms Joyce Bawa-Mogtari, has refuted suggestions by Asantehene Otumfuo Osei Tutu II that he (the monarch) had to persuade Mr Mahama to concede defeat in the 2016 presidential poll when he lost to the then-flag bearer of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Nana Akufo-Addo.
Mr Akufo-Addo polled 53.9% of the votes cast in that election while Mr Mahama garnered 44.4%.
Otumfuo Osei Tutu II recently told the UN General Assembly that: “At the conclusion of the last presidential and parliamentary elections, the country [Ghana] stood on the edge of disaster”, the revered Asante monarch told the UN General Assembly recently about the important role traditional leaders play in the political and democratic dispensation.
“The UN representatives and the diplomatic community were aghast, alarmed that Ghana was going to slip down the slope of electoral violence.
“Fortunately, the moral authority of the palace was at hand. We were able to intervene to persuade the losing candidate to accept his fate and fly both candidates for a quiet encounter to pave the way for a handover,” recounted Otumfuo Osei Tutu II.
However, Ms Bawa-Mogtari said on Metro TV’s Good Morning Ghana on Monday, 16 September that: “Under no circumstances did [former] President Mahama require any persuasion”.
She narrated: “[Former] President Mahama placed a phone call to President-elect [Nana Akufo-Addo], [and] congratulated him in a very short conversation”.
She continued: “By the time we were even preparing to receive the announcement from the EC, everybody knew that it was the decision the good people of Ghana had already made and besides, waiting for the formal announcement, there was a need to make contact with the other contestants particularly the president-elect”.