After weeks of cross-country campaigns and last-minute withdrawals, the stage is set for the New Patriotic Party (NPP) to choose a new set of national executives to manage the party for the next four years.
The Accra Sports Stadium will be at the centre of political attention this weekend as it hosts the governing party which has set for itself the ambitious target of breaking the eight year jinx of governance in the country.
The poll is the highlight of the party’s three-day National delegates’ conference which begins on Friday, bringing together the rank and file of the party drawn from constituencies across all 16 regions of the country.
In all, 47 aspirants are seeking to occupy various positions; National Chairmanship, Vice Chairmanship, General Secretary, Organiser, Youth Organiser, Treasurer, Women’s Organiser and the NASARA Coordinator.
The blend of old and new faces is at the mercy of the Kokomotri (thumb) power of 6,730 delegates – the kingmakers – whose choices evoke the elements of surprises, tension and drama during such polls.
Seven stalwarts of the party are battling it out for the chairmanship position on the basis of their personalities, experiences and campaign messages.
They include Stephen Ayesu Ntim, a former First Vice-Chairman of the NPP and a perennial contender for the role who is optimistic that the fifth time will be a charm for him.
Hoping to move up the party hierarchy is the National Treasurer, Kwabena Abankwah-Yeboah in the contest that also has Prof. Ameyaw Akumfi, a former Minister of State as a contender.
Suspended Second Vice Chairman of the party, Sammy Crabbe, would make a second appearance in the chairmanship race, alongside three new entrants who are expected to make the competition keener.
They include the past Director-General of the State Interest and Governance Authority and the former Member of Parliament of Mfantseman West, Stephen Asamoah-Boateng, and former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Akwasi Osei-Adjei.
The only female in the contest, Gifty Asantewa Ayeh, popularly known as Daavi Ama – is hoping to break the male dominance in the history of the national chair contest.
Incumbent first and second National Vice-Chairpersons of the party; Rita Talata Asobayire and Michael Omari Wadie respectively, would be seeking to retain their positions which are being eyed by nine others.
They are Edmond Peprah, Masawudu Osman, McJewells J. Annan, Kwaku Nkansah, Kinston Kissi, Danquah Smith; Ismael Yahuza; Nuworsu Ken-Wuud and Alfred T. Boye.
In a four-contestant race for the General Secretary, incumbent, John Boadu is being challenged by the CEO of Youth Employment Agency, Justin Kodua Frimpong; former Tamale MCE , Musah Superior and former Suhum MP ; Frederick Opare – Ansah.
For the National Treasurer role, delegates would choose between Dr Charles Dwamena; Mary Posch- Oduro; Dr I. I. Yussif Tedem; Collins Nuamah and Kwabena Oppong Frimpong.
The incumbent Youth Organiser, Henry Nana Boakye (Nana B), would be contesting for the office of National Organiser with former Tema West East MP, Daniel Titus-Glover; Bright Kumi; Dr Kwame Afriyie; Nana Owusu Fordjour; Eric Amoako Twum and Dr Kwame Afriyie.
Seeking to fill the slot of Youth Organiser are Salam Mustapha; Abanga Yakubu Fusani; Nana Kwadwo Akwaa; Michael Osei Boateng, Karikari Klinsman Mensah and Prince Kamal Guma.
It is a three-horse race for the women’s organiser as incumbent Kate Gyamfua would be competing with Ellen Ama Daaku, a member of the national communication team of the party and Hajia Sawudatu Saeed.
For the position of national NASARA Coordinator, incumbent Abdul Aziz Haruna Futa will face off with six others, namely Alhaji Muazu Issaka Kunata, Awal Mohammed, Ismael Haruna, Sulemana Alhassan Atakpo, Abdul-Rahman Diallo and Haruna Maiza.
BY JONATHAN DONKOR