After four consecutive attempts to become Ghana’s president on the ticket of the People’s National Convention (PNC) have failed, Dr Edward Nasigre Mahama is pleading with the party to give him the fifth chance.
The party is divided, Dr. Mahama conceded on Joy News, blaming himself for the divisions.
He is therefore looking for the opportunity to lead the party, not just flagbearer in the forthcoming general elections, but to unite the PNC.
“I want to reunite this party, I can’t leave this party divided as it is,” he told Joy News’ Araba Koomson on Tuesday. He explained that the party was divided after he failed to give a clear direction as to which party to support in the 2008 presidential runoff, and also cited members’ resentful argument on air in recent times.
Dr Mahama opined: “I am responsible for the division because unlike 2000 that I led them [in the runoff], 2008 I said ‘make the decision’, and that is the social example, it’s social experiment. Without the leadership of Edward Mahama the party is divided right in the middle, so leadership is very important.”
His turn around may come as a surprise to many political pundits, after his earlier indication that he will not contest the 2012 elections. Dr Mahama explained that he reversed his decision because some party members have prevailed on him to take up the challenge, stressing his unwillingness to handover a divided party.
Moreover, he said, he has the interest to grow the party, noting his continuous election as the PNC’s flag-bearer speaks volumes of his leadership quality.
“PNC keeps sending me because they have seen my leadership quality. I have sacrificed everything to support the party because I am not interested for my own well-being.”
Dr Edward Mahama has also rejected calls on him to step aside and give the mantle to an equally, if not a more, competent person to lead the party to the 2012 elections.
“Some people in my party have said don’t stand; if you stand and anybody beats you it would be a shame, I said no! It will be an indication that you people are tired of the kind of leadership I am giving, and I will shake whoever wins and walk away from it.”
Dr Mahama is hopeful Ghanaians would one day be convinced that the PNC, led by him would be the best party to govern the country, after the other parties have toyed with the nation and disappointed them.
He will face a stiff challenge from the new entrant, Alhassan Ayariga, as the latter promises to give him a good run for his money.