Aliu Gets Set
2007-06-23 08:34:04This article has been read 735 times.
Vice President Aliu Mahama took the first steps towards 2008 last Sunday when he officially informed his boss, President J.A. Kufuor about his intention to run for president.
It was a crucial and necessary requirement, said a close aide of the VP to ADM. He disclosed that the meeting went “famously well” as the two leaders agreed that it was only “fair” for the VP to want to aspire to the topmost public service office of the country.
The VP was upbeat after the meeting, said the aide. Nothing, the aide disclosed, was discussed as to whether the President would support or not support his No. 2 in the exercise. “It never came up”, whispered the aide.
This is a period of rumour and rumours are circulating that the President may have a preference for Alan Kyeremanteng, Papa Owusu Ankomah or even Foreign Minister Nana Akufo-Addo, but the rumours have not been able to cite any authority to back them.
An NPP insider told ADM: “The president would not go against the peoples’ wishes and would therefore play fair – that’s the man’s nature.”
Meanwhile arguments and yet more rumours are raging as to which aspirant-minister would or should resign and whether the Vice President should “resign” along with the minister-aspirants who may be asked to go by the president.
ADM took up the issue with Lord Commey, the NPP’s National Organize who said since the party’s constitution never cited the position of the Vice President in this regard there is no need making any noise about it.
The NPP Constitution demands the resignation of any minister, national officer of the party or district chief executive who files to run as a presidential candidate on the party’s ticket. Some minister-aspirants have argued that the Vice President should also be made to resign else he would enter the race as the only candidate still holding public office.
This they say is unfair to the other candidates who are being asked to resign before entering the same race.
Lord Commey asked: “The law did not mention the position of the Vice President and I think there is no ambiguity at all in that aspect of the clause in the Constitution…The emphasis was specific. So what is all this noise about?”
The NPP National Organizer said though the clause in question is an amendment to the Constitution, those who saw the need for that amendment and proposed it did not raise the issue of the Vice President “because in their wisdom they thought we should not have a party constitution that is inconsistent with the Constitution of Ghana”.
He said those who proposed the amendment could have raised the issue of the President as well but did not. “Why? Because in the wisdom of the conference at that time, we acknowledged the fact that the presidency is an elected position by the good people of this country and for that matter is not subject to an NPP Delegates Congress.
The Presidency, which includes the position of the Vice President, is over and above the NPP’s Delegates Congress” he explained.
He said any argument that the Vice President must resign before joining the presidential race because his entry as a public office holder puts him at an advantage over other public officers who have resigned should be disregarded.
“I’ve still not heard any serious issue that those propounding that argument have raised and I think they should think through it again because you cannot have a party constitution, a provision of which goes inconsistent with the national constitution.
I don’t want to believe that is what they are suggesting to us.
And in any case if that is what they are suggesting to us then they should note that the leadership of the party, the Conference, the highest decision making body of the party, saw the wisdom of not creating any problem for the party by having a clause in the constitution to be inconsistent with the Constitution of Ghana and hence not including the Presidency in that regard” he stated further.
The Attorney General and Minister for Justice, Mr. Joe Ghartey, when contacted on the same issue shared similar views with the NPP National Organizer. Mr. Ghartey was of the view that the argument does not hold water since the Vice President has not been cited in the said clause of the party’s constitution.
Aliu then would run. It is now a certainty. After paying his respects to the man who has brought him this far, President J.A. Kufuor, “the VP has opened his own door to the presidential complex at the Flagstaff House”, said an ebullient aide.