Nana Akufo-Addo, Presidential Candidate of the NPP, at the weekend was treated to a red carpet reception by the electorate in the Eastern Region when he and members of his campaign team visited some constituencies as part of Phase I of their first comprehensive campaign tour of the flag bearer's home Region.
The number of supporters who welcomed Nana Akufo-Addo easily dwarfed the crowd that was drawn to the two rallies the party has held at Kasoa
He was accompanied on the tour by Kwabena Agyapong, Felix Owusu Agyapong, Mike Oquaye, Boakye Agyarko, all former presidential aspirants and leading members of the Campaign team, the Regional Executive and other leading party activists.
From the Aburi-Nsawam constituency through to Suhum, New Juaben South, Yilo Krobo, Upper Manya, Atiwa, Fanteakwa, Abuakwa North, it was clear from the response that the people were poised to vote massively to catapult Nana Akufo-Addo to the nation"s presidency in the December 7 presidential and parliamentary elections.
This was evidenced in the huge number of people who came out to meet, and to express their support for, the Presidential Candidate who is widely tipped as the obvious successor of President Kufuor.
The incumbent NPP holds 22 out of the 28 parliamentary seats in the Eastern Region. Even though the Region is largely seen as a stronghold of the party, Nana Akufo-Addo pulled a record-crowd that even sent shock waves down the spines of activists of the NPP.
At Nsawam in the Aburi-Nsawam constituency, which was his first point of call, Nana Akufo-Addo and members of his campaign team were met by a large number of enthusiastic party supporters and sympathisers, as well as a delegation of chiefs and elders of the town, at the outskirt of the town where libation was offered to herald his entry into the Region.
It was jubilation galore, as the people entertained themselves with brass band music and performed the popular "Kangaroo' dance, amidst shouts of 'Here comes our next President!' 'Nana, you are winner!' 'Nana, our next President!' 'Nana, no size!', among others.
Addressing the people at separate rallies, Nana Akufo-Addo expressed his appreciation and that of the NPP to the electorate in the Eastern Region for the support they had given the party since the nation returned to constitutional rule in 1992.
He urged them to remain resolute in their support, and rally behind the NPP to ensure another resounding victory in the December elections.
Nana Akufo-Addo explained to the people that even though the NPP government inherited a comatose economy from the NDC government it had managed to build a solid foundation for the nation's economic take-off, as a result of prudent and intelligent management of the affairs of the nation.
He assured the electorate that he was better positioned to build on the foundation laid by the Kufuor administration to bring about progress and prosperity for the citizenry, cautioning them not to make the mistake of voting to return the NDC to power since, in his view, the return of Rawlings's party will reverse the nation's development.
'Now they are asking you to return them to power again. What are they coming back to do? What did they do when they had the opportunity to rule the nation for 19 years?
They don't have anything good to offer the nation, so don't make the mistake to bring them back to power,' Nana Akufo-Addo stressed when he addressed a mammoth rally at the Jackson Park in Koforidua.
Nana Akufo-Addo had earlier addressed similar rallies at Nsawam and Suhum in the Aburi-Nsawam and Suhum constituencies respectively. The two events attracted huge patronage, confirming the NPP's continued dominance in the two constituencies.
The Presidential Candidate also called on the people to ignore politicians who preach violence and tribalism, stressing 'we are all one people and so should not allow anybody to divide us on tribal lines, neither should we allow self-seeking politicians to incite us to engage in violent activities in pursuit of their diabolical agenda.'
Nana Akufo-Addo particularly appealed to NPP supporters to remain calm in the face of provocation from their political opponents, to help ensure peaceful and incident-free electoral process before, during and after the December 7 elections.
'We are confident we are winning; others know they are losing and have therefore decided to spoil the game. Let's remain calm when they provoke us so that we don't allow ourselves to be used to achieve their agenda,' he underscored.
At Asesewa and Nkurakan in the Upper Manya and Yilo Krobo constituencies respectively, where he addressed large numbers of people at separate rallies, the Presidential Candidate assured the people that the next NPP government under an Akufo-Addo presidency would facilitate moves to set up industry to process mangoes which are produced in large quantities in the Krobo area.
Addressing a similar rally at Somanya, capital of the Yilo Krobo constituency, Nana Akufo-Addo debunked claims by the NDC that an NPP government under his presidency would harass Krobos living on lands belonging to Akyems, describing the claim as a wicked propaganda, and an attempt to whip up needless tribal sentiments.
Nana Akufo-Addo and members of his Campaign team used part of their campaign time to attend the funeral of the victims who perished during a land slide that hit Nyensi-Adukrom.
The victims of the disaster were 76-year old Beatrice Yaa Oforiwaa, Doris Asantewaa Brown, 55, and a three-year old boy, Paa Kwasi.
The Presidential Candidate is expected to complete the first Phase of his Eastern Regional campaign tour today at Coaltar in the Ayensuano constituency where he will address a durbar of the chiefs and people.
That will be preceded by visits to the Upper and Lower West Akim constituencies where he will address separate durbars of the chiefs and people at Adeiso and Asamankese respectively.