Ghana's main opposition party, the New Patriotic, Party (NPP), has started the process of how and why it lost the 2008 presidential and parliamentary elections.
On our part, we will publish our findings as and when our research team come up with their analysis.
An important factor which led to the defeat of the NPP 2008 presidential candidate, Nana Akufo-Addo was the way and manner certain members of his campaign team pursued an agenda of harassing leading members of the NPP who supported the NPP flag-bearership bid of Mr. Alan K wadwo Kyerematen. The harassment was in various forms, including using all methods, legal and illegal, to prevent them from winning primaries to be NPP's parliamentary candidates.
'Operation Prevent Kalamari's Men', that is frustrating persons who supported Mr. Kyerematen went on throughout the country but it was very pronounced in the NPP's 'political World Bank' the Ashanti Region.
What these anti-Alan K elements did was to send word to delegates, alleging that certain persons should not be considered for election as parliamentary candidates because they would make the work of Nana Addo's government difficult.
This led to a situation where quite a number of NPP's primaries, especially in their safe seats, were fraught with lots of problems. The NPP National and Constituency executives took their supporters for granted thinking that no matter what happens, those seats would be won.
The September 22, 2008 issue of The Daily Dispatch had a front-page story headed "APATHY IN ASBANTI WILL HURT NPP 'PAA'''. That caption has been reproduced elsewhere on this page.
Part of the article stated, "it is becoming increasingly clear that the NPP seems to be taking the region for granted, with apathy likely to set in among the hard core supporters of the NPP. Apart from apathy, the fact that some losing candidates at the party's primaries in the region are prepared to contest as independent parliamentary candidates indicates that there are problems with the existing NPP mechanism of electing their parliamentary candidates. "
Initial analysis of the December 7 and December 28, 2008 presidential election results reveal that apathy in the Ashanti Region COST Nana Akufo¬-Addo, a first round victory in the December 7 elections.
In the first round on December 7, Nana Akufo-Addo had 1,214,350 valid votes. In the run-off on Decemoer 28, Nana-Akufo-Addo had 1,438,820 votes. The difference was 224, 470 votes: If you consider that Nana Akufo-Addo needed less than 73,500 votes to win on the first round on December 7, then supporters of the NPP will now realise how those attempts to harass Mr. Kyerematen's supporters and apathy cost them, rather dearly.
In terms of the differences in the valid votes cast in the first round and run-off elections, we are mindful of allegations of voter irregularities in the Ashanti and Volta Regions.
The NPP will have to deal with many latent tensions within the party, the first being tensions between the Nana Akufo-Addo and Alan Kyerematen factions. Only the supporters who do not want to deal with the truth will deny all is well with these two factions!
Source: Daily Dispatch