The anointing of Alan Kyeremanteng as his successor, coupled with majority of Ashantis in the NPP trying to ensure that Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo does not become the flagbearer of the NPP for the 2008 Presidential elections is being met with threats of revenge by many Akyems who have vowed to ensure that the NPP loses the Presidential election if their kinsman is denied the chance to lead the party into the 2008 Presidential elections.
Speaking to THIS DAY scouts on a fact finding mission in Akyem towns, particularly Kibi, Asiakwa, Asamankese and Oda, most of the people talked to, said it was the turn of Nana Akufo Addo to become President of Ghana and that Kufuor's “anointing” of Alan Kyeremanteng, an Ashanti, is an attempt to perpetuate an Ashanti hegemony in the party.
“The Busia-Danquah party is originally an Akyem creation,” said Opanyin Kojo Darko, a retired educationist speaking to THIS DAY. “Just check the BIG SIX. You won't find any Ashanti but as many as three prominent Akymes, J.B Danquah, Ofori Atta and Akufuor Addo. So, we have every right to want to lead the NPP. Kyebi, and not Kumasi, is the cradle of the NPP,” he said.
Some of the people who talked to this Day said that Akufo Addo should have won the 1998 Congress that elected John Kufuor as flag bearer of the NPP but the vote was rigged in favour of the Ashanti “man” but this time, we will not accept this.”
“What happened to the Busia-Danquah party in 1999, when Paa Willie formed the UNC out of the P.F.P will happen again if Alan Kyeremanten wins at the Congress. If it means the NDC winning, so be it. No monkey dey work, baboon dey chop business,” said one opinion leader who asked not to be named.
A royal of Ofori Panyin Fie who also declined to be named told THIS DAY that in a heterogeneous country like Ghana, it was important for leadership to be rotated among the various ethnic groups lest some feel superior and others feel inferior.
“We have nothing against Ashantis but why should an Ashanti hand over to an Ashanti. Even in the NDC, Rawlings did not hand over to an Ewe. He could have by passed Mills and chosen Obed who had been his trusted general for years but Rawlings knew this would not be acceptable so he simply chose Mills as his successor. If Kufuor had anointed Aliu, it would have made sense but to bypass Aliu and anoint “Kyeremanteng” smacks of tribalism and that we are against,” the royal said.
Similar sentiments were expressed in most places THIS DAY talked to, a warning that trouble lies in store for the NPP in the event of an Alan Kyeremanteng victory at the December 22 congress of the party.