Former President John Dramani Mahama has described the 2020 general elections as a final match between him and President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo.
Referring to the 2012 polls as “a title fight” and the 2016 elections as “a rematch”, Mahama called the 2020 polls “a decider” and predicted the tiebreaker would return him to the helm of government.
Mahama won in 2012 as a first-timer on the ticket of then governing National Democratic Congress (NDC), securing a 5,574,761 votes that represented 50.7%. Akufo-Addo, Ghana’s main opposition leader at the time and presidential candidate of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), got 5,248,898, representing 47.7%.
In 2016, Mahama fell deep from the coveted seat of power with an incredible 4,713,277 votes (44.4%) to Akufo-Addo who polled a widely unanticipated 5,716,026, representing a record 53.9% since the Kufuor era.
“They say, ‘Why are you bringing your former president? NDC, don’t you have people?’ And we say you, too, didn’t you have people? In 2008, you brought somebody. Professor Mills defeated him. You should have brought a fresh face.
“You brought him again in 2012. John Mahama defeated him. You should also have brought a fresh face. And you brought him again in 2016 and it’s only at that time he won. So, fine. He was defeated several times; you still brought him. And this is what you call a title fight,” Mahama told NDC delegates and supporters in the Bolgatanga Central Constituency during his just-ended tour of the Upper East region.
He continued: “So, two boxers fight and one wins. Then, the one who loses asks for a rematch. So, the second fight is called a rematch. And so, they fight the second one and the other boxer, who lost the first time, won. So, he asks for another match. That match is called the decider. So, 2020 is going to be the decider.”
The packed hall of the Sacred Heart Catholic Social Centre went so frenzy at the conclusion of the scenario that the former President had to pause his address, knowing if he did not do so the deafening noise from the high-spirited crowd would drown out his voice.
“We can win this if we work hard and we are united,” he added when he resumed. “And when I see your faces, those who are branch executives, our constituency executives, our regional executives, then, I have confidence in my heart that in 2020 we shall defeat the NPP. And I beg you, take the ballot box as your own. Guard it jealously,” he stressed as the massively NDC-branded venue shook with ovation.