– The 13-member Kwesi Botchwey committee set up to investigate NDC’s defeat in the 2016 election has reportedly indicted Mahama for playing a principal role in the party’s defeat.
According to the today newspaper which says it has seen excerpts of the 67-page report, the committee determined that whereas Nana Akufo-Addo was deemed incorruptible by many Ghanaians, Mahama’s reputation had been damaged by allegations of corruption and bribery. This, the committee, said worked in the New Patriotic Party’s favour during the election, to the detriment of the NDC. “The NPP won because their leader was acclaimed to be incorruptible while ours was tainted with corruption and bribery, so going into the 2020 elections we (Kwesi Botchwey Committee) propose that we elect somebody who can also claim to be incorruptible,” the paper quoted the Kwesi Botchwey committee as saying. The newspaper said the committee also blamed Mahama for encouraging the formation of groups such as “Friends of Mahama”, whose activities it said were not supervised during the campaign. The Today report said one of the recommendations of the committee was for another candidate to lead the NDC in 2020 if the party wants to do well. This means Mahama will not be allowed to represent the party again. It said the committee also recommended that any future presidential candidate of the NDC must work with the party structures and involve national and regional executives, polling agents and grassroots supporters in the campaign. The report is said to have been rejected by loyalists of Mahama, even before it is released. If true, the report effectively blocks Mahama from representing the NDC in the 2020 elections. Although the former president has yet to indicate interest in contesting the election, there are indications that he is interested. He has, however, urged all NDC members not to focus on who should lead the party but to rather work hard to mobilise support for the party, especially at the grassroots This, he said, was the only way the NDC could secure victory in 2020. The former president added that whatever God had ordained could not be changed, urging his supporters to continue to be patient and also pray for him. “Sometimes God delays [for] good things to come one’s way,” he said.