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Who Leads NDC In 2020...? Alabi, Sly & Debrah Favourites   
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As members of the National Democratic Congress await with bated breath, report of the Kwesi Botchwey-led committee on what led to the party’s humiliating defeat in last year’s presidential and parliamentary elections, names of some prospective candidates; seen as front runners in the race to lead the party into the 2020 election are already trending on social and main stream media.

Whilst the candidature of immediate past President, John Dramani Mahama, for the NDC’s 2020 flag bearer position remains “hanging” following strong objections from his family, names of some party stalwarts believed to be persons interested in leading the biggest opposition party into the next presidential elections is already generating varied and interesting discussions.

Among the tall list of names being bandied are three NDC heavyweights who though; have not openly announced their intention to lead the now biggest opposition party, but, are gaining prominence in the media.

The three are, immediate past Vice Chancellor of University of Professional Studies, Accra, Prof. Joshua Alabi; former Chief Executive Officer of the National Health Authority, Mr. Sylvester Mensah, and the Immediate past Chief of Staff at the Presidency, Mr. Julius Debrah.

This paper has however gathered that, their 2020 flag bearer bid is dependent on ex-president John Mahama’s decision on his future political life. Some of them are looking up to Mr Mahama to make definite pronouncement on the way forward for his career in politics before making their ambition public.

Surprisingly, former Minister of Trade and Industry, Dr Ekow Spio Gabrah who had made two unsuccessful attempts to lead the party and has since been angling to take over from Mr Mahama, appears to have been overtaken by the three NDC kingpins who have gotten their “noses in front”.

But Dr Spio Gabrah appeared unperturbed by the early lead taken by his possible contenders as he recently told the media; a horse that is well fed, groomed and prepared for a race will win. He served notice that he will announce his presidential ambition in 2018.

Former PNDC capo and flag bearer of defunct National Reform Party, Mr Goosie Augustus Obuadum Tanoh, who was also rumored to be gunning for the post after making a surprise appearance at the recent 31st December celebrations has also not had his supposed bid resonate with supporters of the main opposition party.

Other NDC stalwarts like former Communications Minister, Dr Edward Kofi Omane Boamah; former Foreign Affairs Minister, Hannah Serwah Tetteh; immediate past Chief Executive of COCOBOD, Dr Stephen Opuni; former vice President, Kwesi Amissah Arthur among others who were reported to be interested in the post are all said to have chickened out.

In the case of Dr Opuni, report says he has lost the trust and confidence of the grassroots of the NDC after he was alleged to have been hostile to them and some party big shots during his stewardship at COCOBOD.

Some leading members of the NDC, including Greater Accra regional organizer, Anthony Nukpenu; Deputy Volta regional secretary, Mustapha Gbandi and others have openly accused him of contributing to the defeat of the party.

Mr Mahama’s excruciating defeat despite his much-touted unmatched achievements, especially in the area of infrastructure development, is said to have put a break on the presidential ambitions of many NDC big shots who had long confided in friends that they were going to stake claims to the party’s leadership after the immediate past president’s tenure.

However, Messrs Debrah, Sylvester Mensah and Prof Alabi seem unruffled by the ignominious defeat of Mr. Mahama and the NDC. They are reported to have been telling close friends and party bigwigs how they intend to take advantage of the NDC’s unfortunate loss to reorganize the party and bring together all the factions to position it battle ready for the 2020 elections.

Prof Alabi, a former MP for Krowor and former Greater Accra and Northern regional Minister under the Rawlings administration, is said to have his Ga lineage as one of his trump cards that feeds into the NDC’s regional rotation unwritten pact in electing flag bearer.

But Prof Alabi’s impeccable long career in academia appears to have wheeled him away from the rank and file of the NDC who are said to be questioning his “constituency” and commitment to the biggest opposition party.

The man who is believed to be the favorite of majority of grassroots but yet to win the heart of some elders and kingmakers of the party is Mr Julius Debrah. Mr Debrah, immediate past Chief of Staff to President Mahama, has a tall order convincing critics that; he will enjoy the support of his native region, Eastern region, which incidentally happens to be President Akufo Addo’s region too.
Mr Sylvester Mensah, whose 2020 posters are already out even though he has denied knowledge of them, has a perfect blend of Volta and Greater Accra regions as his trump card to make good case for his bid. His Ga background is in sync with the NDC’s regional rotational plan and Ewe background will also woo the party’s World Bank to his side.

But many think he is too young to provide the kind of leadership needed to restructure the NDC and bring together the various factions at this time. Even though he was subsequently cleared of any wrong doing, investigations into his stewardship at NHIA over alleged corruption is also said to have stained his otherwise impeccable record.

While all three front runners have been silent on their ambitions, former MP for La Dadekotopon, Nii Amasah Namoale has openly stated that he will contest the NDC’s 2020 flag bearer election if Prof Alabi decides to give up on his ambition.
The MP, who has been named by think-thank, ODEKRO, as one of the MPs who never spoke in parliament during the life of the 6th parliament, was reported in the media to have said “2020 Nii Amssah Namoale would contest for the presidency if Professor Joshua Alabi is not contesting...”.

But The aL-hAJJ’s investigations indicate that he is not one of the presidential hopefuls being considered by elders and rank and file of the NDC. Stay tuned

Source: The Al-Hajj

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