Former flagbearer aspirant of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) Kwabena Agyei Agyepong says the race as to who leads the ruling party in the 2024 presidential elections is not a two-horse race between Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia and Trades Minister Alan Kwadwo Kyerematen as widely perceived.
He says there are other aspirants lacing their boots, just in wait for nominations to open.
“The ground has not been opened yet,” he said on TV3‘s New Day on Monday, June 13 in an exclusive interview.
“In 2007, I was the youngest of the 17 presidential aspirants. I haven’t ruled myself out at all for this battle.
“I think it is very important that we let the Ghanaians know that our party has a time-honoured tradition that that decision cannot be earned through coercion, endorsements or force. It has to be earned by people, showing respect, going to the various places.”
He stressed any member of the party seeking the mandate of the rank and file to lead must make sure he makes that nationwide tour to every nook and cranny of the country.
“There will be no coronation in NPP,” he stressed.
“If you want to win, move around the country sell your message. You have to earn it.”
The race as to who succeeds Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo as the Presidential Candidate of the NPP has been widely perceived to be between Dr Bawumia and Mr Kyerematen.
The two appear to be winning the tacit endorsement of major stakeholders within the party as major political events tend to be a campaign ground for their supporters.
But the party in 2021 issued a code of conduct and guideline “to regulate the conduct of party members, particularly prospective Presidential and Parliamentary Candidates for election 2024 and their followers, during the pre-elections period”.
Those found to flout the code will be banned from contesting, the Review Report by the Osafo Maafo-led committee stated.
The same committee recommended the lifting of the ban on Mr Agyepong after his suspension from the party.
Together with then National Chairman Paul Awentami Afoko and First Vice Chairman Sammy Crabbe, Mr Agyepong was suspended in 2015 for allegedly working against the then flagbearer of the NPP.
Without a substantive General Secretary and National Chairman, the NPP won the polls the following year.