“My quarrel with President Mahama is not because he is a northerner. I don’t care where anybody comes from. My quarrel with him is that he is a poor leader of a country that has great opportunity and potential. We have a poor leader in John Dramani Mahama, and that is why I am agitating for change”.
These were the words of the 2016 presidential candidate of the New Patriotic Party, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, on Monday, November 21, 2016, whilst addressing the NPP’s Upper East Regional rally at Bolgatanga.
According to Nana Akufo-Addo, all of his adult life has been spent fighting for the progress of the Ghanaian people, without recourse to ethnicity, colour or tribe.
“I fought Acheampong’s Union Government. Acheampong was an Ashanti, but it didn’t make any difference to me. I thought the Union Government was a bad idea and I opposed it. I opposed PNDC under the Rawlings, who is Ewe, because I thought military government is not good for Ghana. I am tribal blind, I am colour blind. It is Ghana which is my interest. I don’t mind where anybody comes from,” he added.
On the choice of Alhaji Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia as his running mate, Akufo-Addo stressed that, “he (Dr. Bawumia) is not my running mate not just because he’s from the North. He is my running mate because he’s one of the most brilliant economists that our country has got, and he’s going to help me put the economy of our country on the path of progress and prosperity, and ensure the wellbeing of our people.”
Nana Akufo-Addo was, therefore, surprised that with the wind of change blowing all over our country, President Mahama, instead of defending his record in office and telling the people what he will do for them, is rather resorting to the use of tribal and divisive language.
“Instead of being a figure to bring all of us together, he wants to set North against South, he wants to set tribe against tribe. That should not be the task of a Ghanaian leader. A Ghanaian leader should try and bring all the people of Ghana together as one, whether they are Mamprusis, Dagombas, Gonjas, Frafras, Kusasis, Grushis, Walas, Dagartis, Ashantis, Akuapems, Akyems, Kwahus, Fantes, Ahantas, Nzemas, Ewes or Gas. We are all one people, and our leaders should ensure that the coherence amongst us is maintained,” he added
The NPP flagbearer, thus, urged all Ghanaians to “turn our backs on tribal language, and turn our backs on the politics of reaction and the politics of yesterday. Let us look forward, look forward to that bright future, which is our lot as Ghanaians, and fulfil our destiny as the Black Star of Africa.”
An Akufo-Addo government, he assured Ghanaians will help “create a civilization that is going to be the light of Africa, and the wonder of the world. That is the future ahead of us, and not a future of tribalism.”