With Ghana going to the polls in 2024, leading presidential candidates Dr Mahamudu Bawumia of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and John Dramani Mahama of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) face critical decisions in the selection of a running mate that could boost their electoral fortunes.
Both Bawumia and Mahama currently hold about 35% of the vote as northern presidential candidates according to comments by former NDC member Stephen Atubiga.
However, Mr Atubiga argues their choice of vice presidential candidate could boost their support to between 55-60%.
In a Facebook post, Atubiga outlined some of the main contenders being considered:
"As JDM is confused for now, as to go with Debra a unifier, a grassroots, a team player and the best chief of staff the NDC has ever had. Or to go with Eric oppoku, a very strong communicator on government policies and structures."
He adds of Bawumia's choices: "Then Napo who is a grassroots, a team player. Who has not only transformed the education sector, but significantly positively changed the energy sector despite his magical professional background. Very strong biting communicator in projecting or defending government policies."
According to Atubiga, selecting running mates from the Ashanti region, considered the backbone of the NPP's support base, could deliver Bawumia the crucial additional votes he needs.
The one-time NDC flagbearer contender noted the pressure both Bawumia and Mahama face in getting this decision right, as their choice of vice presidential candidate could be pivotal in determining the outcome of tightly contested elections.
However, he stressed that whoever they choose will need to unite their party and appeal to the swing voters who may well decide Ghana's next government.