Bawumia campaign team deadly

Any keen observer of how two elephants fight would come to the same conclusion as I did after following the process leading to the election and declaration of Alhaji Dr Mahammudu Bawumia as flag bearer of the New Patriotic Party. 

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The Bawumia strategy identifies the opponent and reaches out to them two years before the battle lines are drawn.

When, as far back as 2021, he started visiting Father Campbell and preaching his “we serve the same God” message on other Christian platforms, very few Ghanaians fathomed where all that conversation was coming from.

 It’s called strategy – thinking outside the box.

It was against the backdrop of this observation that I issued a warning on this page recently advising John Dramani Mahama and his National Democratic Congress (NDC) that in the 2024 elections, they were into the fight of their lives, a fight more brutal than anything they had tasted in politics since 1992.    

Brutal

By “brutal”, I do not mean bloody (and let’s pray no blood is spilled before, during and after the elections).

 By bloody I am not referring to the shootings on December 7, 2020 in which six persons were killed in incidents involving security forces.

After reading the report of the committee that probed the Ayawaso Wuogon shootings on January 31, 2019, I cringe at any suggestion that Ghana is still a democracy.

Our boast as the second most peaceful country in Africa is comical.  

The real meaning of “brutal” was operationalised for me when, on Monday, February 19, the New Patriotic Party (NPP) reeled off a list of personalities who will prosecute the Bawumia Campaign. 

 word, what a team! Solid. It’s a deadly combination of statesmanship, strategy and talk.

Statesmen and stateswomen like ex-President Kufuor and Rev Dr Joyce Aryee win people over because they have what Fantes describe as “a heavy face”. 

Strategy is in the hands of the General himself, Dan Botwe, the man who is not used to losing battles.

Leave debators like Nana Akomea and Kwabena Agyepong to lead the talk behind the mics at radio stations and before the cameras on television.

These are debators who come against the opponent with not just words, but the palm oil with which words are eaten.

The stage is set for a showdown with NDC’s Sammy Gyamfi and Sam George, who have gained a reputation for ramming through enemy defences with irrefutable facts and figures. 

Fresh blood

I acknowledge the fresh intellectual blood infused into the team by Dr Gideon Boako, spokesperson for the Presidential Candidate, and Dennis Edward Aboagye, Director of Communications.

On Bawumia’s list are two of my most distinguished women of all time, Elizabeth Ohene, former Editor of Daily Graphic, former Senior Producer, Researcher and Columnist on BBC World Service; Board member of International Commission of Investigative Journalists. 

Women of influence

The other is Rev Dr Joyce Aryee, a woman of class, former PNDC Secretary (Minister) for both Information and Education, the first woman CEO of the Ghana Chamber of Mines, who now sits on the boards of as many local and international organisations as there are fingers and toes on both hands and both feet to count.

As far back as 2001 she was on many minds and lips as the probable Running Mate to then flag bearer, John Agyekum Diawuo Kufuor.

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These are personalities who may never be found physically standing on the soap box, but they have, over the years, built a reputation for themselves so huge that even their silent association with a candidate sways opinion in favour.

The Bawumia list is, for me, the deadliest for the NDC.

The person the NDC should fear most is Dan Botwe, listed as Strategist for the Campaign. 

He talks but is not talkative. Within NPP, since year 2000, he has not lost the title, “General”. 

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Better managers

I am done.

But I will not drop my pen until I have an answer from Ghanaians: What is this about Running Mates that keeps the list of females so short when, as far as I am concerned, women are better managers of any economy?

How many men have been known to (or can) grow families, including seeing their children through school — basic, SHS and universities — eking out a living from daily sales of GHc1 groundnuts and tomatoes?

Crossing competence with political acumen alone, is Ghana in short supply of Ursula Owusus, Nana Oyes, Joyce Aryees?

Rwanda has female majority in parliament — 61.3 per cent in the Chamber of Deputies.

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Rwanda's Constitution guarantees, at least 30 per cent representation of women in decision-making organs.

Over half of the Cabinet, and of judges, are female.

No wonder that country is such a shining star in Africa!

So why are our political parties not putting up women or pushing them to the front?

Answer: Political nominations and appointments are done by males looking for their kind: corrupt.

 Unfortunately for them, most women of stature are not thieves.

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