NPP ‘Opposition’ Bigwigs Joining Alan Campaign
The ongoing campaign of the former Trade and Industry minister, John Alan Kwadwo Kyeremanten, ahead of the New Patriotic Party (NPP’s) flagbearer race, is attracting many bigwigs of the party.
Even though 10 aspirants have,so far, declared their intention to contest theslot, though the party is yet to set a date, Mr.Kyeremanten’s camp appears to be the center of attraction, for not only the rank and file, but also certain heavyweights in the party.
But what is interesting is that, many known faces who have begun to join the former trade minister’s campaign are persons who sometimes sound like opposition forcesagainst the government,because they have been sidelined in one way or the other by the Presidency.
Within the political circles, these bigshots have been tagged as elements who were snubbed by President Akufo-Addo and are,therefore, to some extent,seemingly bitter.
They include ex-ministers, both currentand former Members of Parliament (MPs) andnational executives of the party, as well as people believed to be aligned to former President John Agyekum Kufuor.
Chief among them are the former general secretary of the NPP, Nana Ohene Ntow, and the immediate past communication director, Yaw BuabenAsamoa,who are now senior spokespersons for Mr.Kyeremanten’s campaign.
In the over six years of the NPP administration, Mr. Ohene Ntow, the former morning show host of Accra-based Peace FM, has stayed out of government without many knowing what he has been up to.
He is said to be a loyalist of the former President Kufuor and even though the party returned to power in 2017, nothing was heard of him until the campaign of Mr. Kyeremanten started heating up.
He is a believer of the Alan Dream and, already, he is on every available platform explaining the aspirant’s agenda for the party and a possible future government.
Also featuring prominently in the team is one-time MP for the Adentan constituency,in the Greater Accra Region, Yaw BuabenAsamoa. He was over the weekend in the Volta Region with Mr.Kyeremanten as part of his campaign.
On that trip last week, the former MP, in an interview with the media, expressed concern about how he has been lied against and dragged within the party, since he joined the train.
He said many publications have been made and attributed to him which he has no knowledge about.
The former communication director of the NPP was one of the people who did not waste time to join the team long before Mr.Kyeremanten resigned from government.
Though very vocal, he was never appointed into government and so, after he was removed as the communication director, he went into political hibernation.
Then there is a former MP for the Lower West Akim constituency,GiftyKlenam, who was sacked as the chief executive officer (CEO) of the Ghana Export Promotion Authority (GEPA), together with her deputy, Eric Twum, for alleged corrupt practices.
She was being investigated by the Economic and Organized Crime Officer (EOCO), but it is unknown the status of the matter. The ex-MP has been seen in the company of the former trade minister in many of his tours and visits across the country.
One of the few MPs coming from the Majority side in Parliament who has also come out boldly to support Mr.Kyeremanten is the first time MP for the BortianorNgleshieAmanfro constituency, Sylvester Tetteh.
The outspoken lawmaker has declared his unflinching support for Alan, but not without attacks from some loyalists from the other camp.
Speaking on Metro Television’s Good Morning Ghana programme last Thursday, monitored by The Anchor, Mr. Tetteh disclosed he has come under a barrage of attacks from within the party because of his choice of Alan.
He has denied accusation that he was supporting Alan because President Akufo-Addo never saw him worthy to appoint him as a minister.
Serving as the MP for an area in the national capital that has its road network as one of the poorest, he said he has been told his roads are that terrible and will never be fixed because of his choice of a flagbearer candidate.
According to him, the many allegations and attacks on his person are unfortunate because he always supported the President, Nana Addo, from his days in opposition, but since he is not contesting again, he chose a different person as his preferred candidate.
Another MP on board the Alan train is the Subin constituency MP, Eugene Boakye Antwi. He is one of the ‘rebel’ MPs on the Majority side, just like his junior colleague Sylvester, who are opposing the continuous stay of the Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta.
He was a Deputy Minister of Works and Housing during the President’s first term. Unlike his other colleagues who lost their seats and so lost their portfolios as ministers, he retained his, but he was later removed.
Also joining Mr.Kyeremanten’s team is the former Minister for Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts and former MP for Evalue-Gwira-Ajomoro constituency, Catherine AbelemaAfeku.
Even though she was also appointed as a Minister of State at the Office of the President, she was snubbed in the second term of the President, after she lost her parliamentary seat in the 2020 general elections. Some allegations of misappropriation of funds were levelled against her. Since her snub, the outspoken MP has been quiet until now.
Dr. Amoako Baah
Another known face of the team is a former Political Science lecturer at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), Dr. Richard Amoako Baah.
The onetime NPP national chairman-aspirant is one of the stalwarts in the NPP in the Ashanti Region, but he is peeved with the current administration so much that he does not miss an opportunity to point out its shortcomings.
He is on record to have described the President in very unpleasant terms, for his refusal to sack the embattled finance minister. He has been unhappy with the fact that he was ignored by the powers-that- be, despite his unflinching support for the party, when it was in opposition.
One other unforgettable name is the oft-reckless communication team member of the NPP, Hopeson Adorye. He never hid his support for Mr.Kyeremanten, as he declared his support for him in the early days of the President’s second term.
It cost him his job at the National Security ministry and, as it stands now, he is jobless, but for his association with the team. He was heard loud on radio and television explaining how and why he was sacked, and linked it to his choice of the former trade minister.
His wife and gospel singer, Empress Gifty, who has had her shows graced by Mr.Kyeremanten, consoled him and said they will survive.
A former MP for the Manhyia North constituency is also on board the Alan campaign. Mr. Collins Owusu Amankwa, who was slapped by the Ashanti Regional chairman of the NPP, Bernard Antwi-Boasiako, lost his seat not long ago.
It is argued that he lost his seat because he is an Alan and former President Kufuor loyalist.