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15.04.2008 Politics

Diaspora Citizens Advice Nana Akufo-Addo in his Search for Running Mate

By Accra Mail
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Kofi Agyepong

As talk at home of who would be the running mate to the NPP's presidential candidate gathers momentum, voices in the Diaspora are joining the debate.

This has been intensified by the NDC's announcement last week of John Mahama as running mate to Professor John Evens Atta Mills.

"To be frank, I have told a lot of people about this For now it will be very difficult for our party to get a running mate from the North like Alhaji Aliu Mahama There are many names coming out but you can judge for your self and tell me later."

The above are the words of Mr Martin Kwaning, an activist of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and former President of TESCON who had an exclusive telephone interview with the ADM over the weekend.

Mr. Kwaning, who lives in London and told ADM that he would be coming home to help in the Akufo-Addo campaign congratulated the NDC's John Mahama, and said he hoped the NPP would make the right choice. "It's a difficult decision, especially when people still want our party to go to the North again, but I know Nana is someone who can make the right choice - though a very difficult one", he said.

He said some governments around the world had suffered because of differences between the president and the vice president and therefore called on Nana Akufo-Addo to use the strong partnership between President John Agyekum Kufour and Vice President Aliu Mahama to guide him in his choice of a running mate.

Many names have been cropping up since last December. These include Alhaji Mustapha Ali Idris, Alhaji Bonifica Abubakar Saddique, Alhaji Malik Yakubu, Hajia Alima Mahama, Sheikh I.C. Quaye and lately Mohammed Ibn Chambas and Chief Jawula. A strong point is also being made for Mr. Alan Kyeremanten, who came second during the NPP congress in December.

Mr. Kwaning applauded Nana Akufo-Addo for his "all-inclusive initiatives" since becoming the presidential candidate for the NPP late last year, and advised him and the party to adopt the slogan of "New Beginning" as the platform on which to campaign for the December elections.

A new beginning he said, " encapsulates the admission that Positive Change Chapters 1 and 2 have laid a solid foundation for an NPP government which from 2009 onwards would set a new beginning, a new agenda, "on crucial areas that need ruthless transformation."

The former TESCON President expressed his regret that the advances in technology and globalization had not been taken advantage of by huge sections of the society.

"This is why Nana Akufo-Addo and the NPP hierarchy should soberly reflect on this slogan", he said.

The New Beginning, the former TESCON President said, would send an "unequivocal message to all Ghanaians that something new is dawning on us."

He explained: "For instance, President Kufuor has done a massive job for the Police Service, but we need a new agenda for the Police Service to give them the impetus to be able to embark on new scientific and sophisticated modus operandi "

Mr. Kwaning said under the new slogan, the country's dysfunctional and largely outmoded public institutions would give way to a new beginning, whereby public institutions would be customer oriented and ICT driven.

"As a nation, we cannot continue to behave and act in the same manner as we did 30years ago Today, nations aspire to emancipate their people from their disgraceable economic situation, dismantling their dilapidated attitude and actions and in its place instituting a new beginning structures", he said.

He said Nana Akufo-Addo's own conviction that the Guggisburg economic model is going to be thrown away is an acknowledgement that there is the need for a new agenda.

This is the appropriate time for a new-beginning-culture to permeate all politicians to have sympathy for the people they govern.

Mr Kwaning said this year's election is crucial and entreated all members to rally behind the party to win power this December.

"Nature perhaps would not add to our existing natural resources so it is very imperative for politicians to make optimum and reasonable use of our current resources for the benefit of the generations yet unborn", he concluded.

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