Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, the leader of the New Patriotic Party’s caucus in Parliament has clarified a comment he made on the party’s choice of candidate for the 2024 elections, explaining that his statement is not an endorsement of the Vice President Mahamudu Bawumia.
The Suame MP in a Joy News interview explained that having had two Akans as leaders, the party should show diversity by offering the position to a non-Akan.
Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu told Joy News that “Inwardly, I know I have the competence to lead the party but is it wise that after two Akans – former President Kufuor and current President Akufo-Addo – to present a flagbearer candidate with different ethnicity.”
“I think it is not good for a party which has been accused by some as being overly Akanistic in nature. But not everybody would agree with me and that is the beauty of democracy.”
His comment has been misconstrued to be a tacit endorsement of Dr Mahamudu Bawumia who has emerged as a front liner for the candidate.
Speaking on Okay FM’s morning show, Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu said that he did not intend to declare support for Bawumia.
He explained that he is just opening up the conversation for the representation of non-Akan for the next polls and not declare support for Bawumia.
“During the campaign for the 2020 elections, John Mahama said that he pitied Bawumia because the NPP is a party for the Akans and he will be ignored at some point. We must consider all these things. I’m not saying we should give it to Bawumia. He is not the only person who comes from a minority tribe or non-Akan but we should be looking at all these things, he proffered.
Touching on the issue of Alan Kyerematen, the Majority Leader explained that an agreement could be reached among the interested parties so that the Trades and Industry Minister act as running mate for the non-Akan candidate.
He downplayed suggestions that he is lobbying for a running mate with his public statements.
“Someone mentioned Alan, and I said that if we all agree to select a non-Akan, we can make Alan the running mate of that person so unity will prevail in the party. People did not follow my statement well. They think I’m fighting for Running Mate for myself but as far as running mate issues are concerned, people who have had conversations with me know my choice for the running mate,” the MP for Suame added.