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Ghana’s governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) goes to the polls on Saturday 17 July 2022 to elect fresh national officers to steer the affairs of the party prior to the election of a flagbearer for the 2024 elections.
Top among the positions is that of the national chairperson of the centre-right and liberal-conservative party. The winner’s first major hurdle would be how to forge a united front to elect a presidential candidate who could help the party retain power.
Nana Akufo-Addo, the second president of the NPP party after John Kufuor since its formation in 1992, is hoping to pass down the presidency to someone from his own party once he completes his second term in 2024.
The governing party is sharply divided into two main factions as it heads to its national annual delegates’ conference to elect officers. It is believed that former President Kufuor’s choice for a flagbearer is the current trade minister Alan Kyerematen, even though Akufo-Addo wants to hand over the baton to his close ally, Vice President Mahamudu Bawumia.
These two factions are directly and indirectly influencing the possible outcome of the upcoming national executive positions, especially on who becomes the chairperson. The chair will thus pave the way for the other delegates to decide on the next flagbearer.
Once you’re able to get your favourite candidate to win the national chairperson position it makes your work a lot easier
“The race for the national chairperson position of the NPP has become tight because the presidential aspirants have a keen interest in [it],” Augustine Bukari, a political science lecturer, tells The Africa Report.
“The flagbearer aspirants are particularly interested in who becomes the national chairperson because that person [makes] the decisions and the other executives follow. Once you’re able to get your favourite candidate to win the national chairperson position it makes your work a lot easier,” he says.
Who will chair Ghana’s governing NPP into the next elections? The Africa Report takes a look at the political profiles of the candidates:
- Stephen Ntim
He has been tipped as the favourite. This is the fifth successive time since 2005 that Ntim is trying his luck at the national chairperson position of the governing NPP. He believes the time has come for him to lead the party, hence his campaign slogan ‘it’s time’.
He served as the party’s first vice chairman between 2001 and 2005, is multilingual and holds a Diplome Superieur d’Etudes Francaises from the Université Nationale de la Côte d’Ivoire.
- George Kwabena Abankwah-Yeboah
Abankwah-Yeboah is the incumbent national treasurer of the party, a position he has occupied for the past eight years, and a founding member of the NPP in 1992.
He currently works as the CEO of a pharmaceutical firm in Accra. He is campaigning under the slogan ‘Victory 2024 and beyond’.
- Stephen Asamoah Boateng
Boateng once served as an information minister and a lawmaker in the Kufuor administration. He also held two other ministerial positions: minister for local government rural development and environment, tourism and diaspora relations as well as head of the State Interest and Governance Authority. The agency was tasked with the responsibility of checking the performance management of state-owned enterprises.
Boateng had been appointed by Akufo-Addo and held the position until November 2021 when he resigned to focus on his campaign to become the party’s national chairman.
- Gifty Asantewa Ayeh (Daavi Ama)
The NPP faithful affectionately refer to her as Daavi Ama. Madam Ayeh is the only woman running for the national chairperson of the NPP. She has served as a former national treasurer of the party. She will be counting on her grassroots and national operations to win the hearts of the delegates.
He is not new to NPP supporters. Ameyaw-Akumfi was a former education minister, director-general of the Ghana Education Service (GES) and first minister of railways development – all under the Kufuor administration.
He became the board chairman for the Public Procurement Authority (PPA) under Akufo-Addo.
- Akwasi Osei-Adjei
He was the minister of foreign affairs and regional integration during the Kufuor era. He also served as an MP for 12 years, from 1997 to 2008. In 2003, he was appointed a deputy minister for trade and industry. He is hoping to bridge the gap between the government and the supporters if he wins.
- Sammy Crabbe
Crabbe is a former second national chairman of the NPP and a former Greater Accra regional chairman of the party. He has been a bankroller of the party and part of the organisational and administrative structure from the grassroots to the national level. Prior to the NPP coming back to power in 2017, Crabbe was suspended from the party over alleged disciplinary issues.
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