The outgoing national organiser of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) Sammi Awuku has commended the President Nana Akufo-Addo for warning his ministers aspiring to succeed him to “focus on the job” he has given them, or “quit now to pursue” their presidential ambitions.
There is growing anxiety within the government and the governing party over the campaign activities of a small number of government ministers who are aspiring to get the nod to become the New Patriotic Party’s presidential candidate for 2024, even though the election is still three years away.
The warning by Akufo-Addo came a day after the steering committee of the NPP met at the party headquarters to discuss the matter, among other pressing issues, as the party embarks on a series of internal elections for party executives from the constituency to regional to national levels.
Speaking on Asaase Radio’s weekend news analysis programme – The Forum – on Saturday (18 December), transmitting live from the Heroes’ Park in Kumasi, Awuku said ministers cannot serve two masters at the same time.
“It was an error for people to start campaigning ahead of opening of ballot. We’re calling on our supporters to follow laid down rules. The president’s call is in the right direction because you can’t be in charge of a ministry and be aggressively campaigning at the same time,” he told the host, Wilberforce Asare.
According to him, ministers who have presidential ambitions should rather help the current government to succeed because they would be campaigning based on the “successful record of the Akufo-Addo-led government”.
“Internal cohesion and party discipline are key to break the eight. Whoever emerges as the presidential candidate of the NPP has to campaign on the record of Nana Akufo-Addo – about 60% on his record and 40% on the person’s persona,” Awuku, who is the director-general of the National Lottery Authority (NLA) said.
He was speaking on the sidelines of the NPP national delegates’ conference officially taking place on Sunday (19 December) in Kumasi. About 8,000 delegates are expected to attend the stock-taking conference aimed at amending parts of the party’s constitution.