A group of leading members of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) in the Upper West Region, are advocating for the election of Second Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Hon. Alban Sumana Kingsford Bagbin, for the 2020 Presidential ticket of the NDC, saying his election will attract a critical mass of voters that the NDC has traditionally not attracted strongly.
According to them, a Bagbin flagbearership in 2020 will easily woo intellectuals and the intelligentsia to the side of the NDC, a critical section of the society that has usually shied away from the NDC and its mass appeal.
“Hon. ASK Bagbin is himself an intellectual and, the weight of his voice and advice is seen in the way many fellow intellectuals listen to him when he speaks. NDC is a party for the masses but the truth is that the intellectual base of Ghana keeps growing and we need this critical mass of Ghanaians on our side.
“With Hon. Bagbin already being a toast of the intellectual class of our country, we will be doing ourselves a lot of good if we elect him as flagbearer for 2020, since he would easily attract the ‘book long people’, which has mostly voted for the NPP, to the NDC.”
That statement had been made by Mr. Atorewe Weadam, a leading member of the NDC in the Upper East Region, at a press conference in Bolga on Friday. The press conference had mostly been attended by delegates of the party, including Awiah Baba, a prominent NDC activist in Navrongo.
According to Mr. Weadam who addressed the press conference, Hon. Bagbin’s intellectual appeal is evidenced in the large number of awards that he has gotten from intellectual bodies.
One such intellectual association, he pointed out, is the Global Institute for Leadership Capacity Building, which awarded Hon. Bagbin the Governance and Leadership Excellence award for 2016.
In that award, the citation read: “For over two decades, you have been pivotal in preserving the heritage of Ghana’s Parliament and her political landscape as well. You have done this by demonstrating astuteness and acuity in governance and political leadership.
“Through your efforts, we have an enviable Parliament in the sub region that is equipped, structured and institutionalized to undertake its full legislative functions.
“Rt. Hon, your leadership embodies the early political Founders’ virtues of hard work, dedication and service to the nation.
Your immense contribution to Constitutional reforms, governance and politics as an experienced governance expert and Politician and also the longest serving Parliamentarian in the Fifth Parliament of The Republic of Ghana is praiseworthy and highly estimable.
“You are a trainer of trainers, a lecturer and a mentor to many budding Politicians and Parliamentarians in Ghana and Africa. You are an exceptional Statesman with integrity and character.”
The beautiful citation had been read by the Founder and Leader of the Global Institute for leadership capacity building, Selassie W. Addae.
According to Mr. Atorewe Weadam, that citation is just one of numerous that he deemed purposeful to quote in order to make his point that Hon. Alban Bagbin would be a potent magnet to the intellectual base of the country.
“Hon. Bagbin has won so many leadership awards and citations, that if we were to say we want to mention all, it will take us days to complete,” he said. Mr. Weadam therefore called on delegates of the party to vote massively for him to lead the NDC into 2020.
Mr. Awiah Baba, who had shared the high table of the press conference with Mr. Weadam, added that the Nadowli-Kaleo MP is not only a man with track record that is attractive to the intelligentsia, but the political class and the masses as well.
“In 2012, Hon. Bagbin was voted the best Minister under President Mills. As the Minister of Health, he supervised the building of many Nursing Training schools. It is also a well-known fact that Hon. Bagbin as Health Minister, initiated the upgrade of the Ridge Hospital,” he said.
Mr. Baba added that as Water Resources, Works and Housing Minister, Hon. Bagbin had also made significant progress in the construction of the Keta Sea Defense. “He was the pivotal person who increased the water coverage in Ghana from a little over 50% to over 80%,” he said.