The National Democratic Congress (NDC) has elected former President John Dramani Mahama, as its flag bearer for the 2020 general elections.
Following a keenly contested primaries on Saturday, he polled 213,487 votes representing 95.23 per cent of the total valid votes cast to emerge victorious.
A former Vice-Chancellor of University of Professional Studies, Accra (UPSA), Professor Joshua Alabi came second with 3,404 votes representing 1.52 per cent.
Despite a fiery campaign, Second Deputy Speaker and Member of Parliament for Nadowli/Kaleo, Alban Kingsford Sumana Bagbin, placed third with 2,301 votes representing 1.03 per cent of the total votes cast.
The fourth in the seven-man contest was Goosie Tanoh, who polled 2,091 votes representing 0.93 per cent.
Ekwow Spio-Garbrah, former Minister of Trade and Industry in the erstwhile Mahama government, came fifth with 1,447 votes which represents 0.65 per cent of the total valid votes cast.
Former Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA), Sylvester Mensah polled 934 votes representing 0.42 per cent.
A businessman, Nurudeen Iddrisu placed seventh after securing 520 votes representing 0.23 per cent.
In his acceptance speech after the declaration, John Mahama expressed gratitude to the rank and file of the party for the victory adding that the overwhelming endorsement was signs of the NDC’s readiness for victory in 2020 and called for a united front.
“I’m deeply touched by the overwhelming endorsement I have received from the grassroots of the party. It is a call to action. It is my hope that we will work together and eschew all attempts to divide us. Let us trust each other and let us not believe the kind of stories we circulated creating an impression that we are against each other,” he stated.
The party, he said, has spoken with one voice and pledged to work closely with all members to ensure that the common objective of returning to power to govern the country would be achieved.
As a sign of the unity within the NDC, the former President stated that all six other aspirants had called him on phone to congratulate him on the resounding victory.
“Tonight, I want to serve notice to Ghana that from the outcome of this election, the NDC is strong, united and poised for victory 2020. And nothing, absolutely nothing will stop our march towards the Flagstaff House,” former President Mahama stated.
National Chairman of the NDC, Samuel Ofosu Ampofo chided the current government for abandoning developmental projects started by the previous government saying that “Ghana has come to a standstill.”
He said the NDC was ready to provide to Ghanaians the kind of leadership that would meet their aspirations unlike the New Patriotic Party (NPP) government which has nothing to show for its two years of governance.
The NDC presidential primaries, which started as early as 7:00am across all 275 constituencies across the country on Saturday, came to an end after the Electoral Commission (EC) completed the collation of the results at about 12:00am on Sunday.
The decision by the National Executives to cede all security arrangements of the elections to the Ghana Police Service proved to be a masterstroke as no security breach or violence was recorded.
Earlier, former President Jerry John Rawlings called for fairness and transparency in the presidential primaries.
“Let us conduct today’s presidential primaries with dignity, transparency and fairness. My best wishes to all the candidates,” he stated.
BY CLAUDE NYARKO ADAMS