The ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) has revisited the controversy over whether or not President Akufo-Addo will debate John Mahama sending clear signals that the party will not engage the former president in any debate ahead of the 2020 elections.
According to the NPP, it is not ready to honour Mr. John Mahama’s request to debate the incumbent president
Ahead of the 2020 polls, the Akufo-Addo administration has centred its campaign on the issue of infrastructure after it announced that it has initiated 17,334 infrastructure projects in various parts of the country.
Mr. Mahama suggested that this is hypocritical from the Akufo-Addo administration and that only a debate will settle the scores.
On The Point of View show on Citi TV however, National Organiser of the NPP, Sammi Awuku pointed out that the party is yet to be fully convinced why the debate is necessary.
“He [John Mahama] has his campaign plan and strategy, and we have our campaign and strategy. We have also brought forth our discussions which is the leadership of service, protecting our progress and transforming Ghana for all. Unless what we have stated are not the fact but if we are to take Mr. Mahama’s words and say let’s go for debate; we know what they want to do.
...They want to set their own questions and try to answer themselves. Unless someone convinces me that the only way for us to have a proper discourse is when there is debate say for 90 minutes and then it is over. But let me say that so far we haven’t been convinced why there should be a debate,” he said.
This is not the first time the NPP has served notice it will not be pressured to allow President Akufo-Addo to participate in any debate with the Mr Mahama on infrastructural achievements.
Deputy Campaign Manager for the NPP, Mustapha Abdul-Hamid said Mr Mahama has no moral right to throw a challenge for a debate given some comments he made about such debates in the past.
“That challenge is unnecessary. Taking it or not is unnecessary. First, this challenge by Mahama clearly shows what we have told the Ghanaian people that he is a person who has no principle and stance on anything. He is a flip-flop, he is wishy-washy and indecisive.”
“In 2012, he said clearly to the people of this country that debate about records is a recipe for mediocrity. So what has changed that he wants a debate on infrastructure records that he wants us to descend into the mediocrity that he is in? We are not ready for his mediocrity. He is indecisive and wishy-washy. We are not interested in any debate. It is not necessary”, he said on Eyewitness News on Thursday.
Mr. Abdul-Hamid believes Ghanaians are already “awarding their marks”, on the achievements of the NPP in comparison with that of the NDC hence any debate to set the record straight in a “theoretical debate” will make no significant change.
“For me as far as I am concerned, I don't think theoretical debates are necessary. People feel what we do in their everyday lives, and they are in a better position to make their judgement on December 7 with or without debate,” he added.