Delegates of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) on Saturday handed an overwhelming victory to the party?s two-time presidential candidate, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, with 94.35%.

Nana Akufo-Addo
Nana Akufo-Addo

The election which took place in 275 constituencies across the country and one special polling station at the party?s Asylum Down national headquarters, saw Nana?s fellow contenders, Alan Kyerematen and Francis Addai-Nimoh, only managing 4.75% and 0.91% votes respectively.

In all, a total of 125,726 out of over 140,000 delegates cast their votes, out of which 124, 449 were validated with the remaining 1,277 counted as rejected votes.

Voting went on smoothly across the country with only a few incidents of misunderstanding between agents of some of the aspirants which were later resolved amicably.

Supporters of Nana Akufo-Addo went into wild jubilation when provisional results of the polls started trickling in from the regions at the end of the exercise, with their candidate sweeping majority of the votes.

Later, it became clear that Nana had carried the day with a landslide victory.

For many, the outcome of the results was to be expected since they were sure delegates would repeat the outcome of the special delegates? congress which saw Nana Akufo-Addo emerging winner with well over 80% of the valid votes cast.

Some party members, particularly Alan?s campaign team, including his spokesman, Nana Ohene-Ntow, were confident that Alan would win the election since he kept boosting his (Alan?s) ego with certain utterances.

This was part of the reasons Ohene-Ntow, former General Secretary of the NPP, asked Akufo-Addo to save himself and step down graciously for Alan.

Results

In his home region, the Eastern Region, Akufo-Addo polled 98.02% of the total valid votes cast while he scored 96.83% in the Western Region, with 96.48% and?96.38% in the Northern and the Central Regions respectively.

In the Greater Accra Region, he secured 94.70% of the total valid votes, with 94.64% in the Upper West and 93.81% in the Upper East Regions respectively. The party?s stronghold?the Ashanti Region?gave him 93.65%, with the Brong-Ahafo Region also handing him 93.33% and 83.37% in the Volta Region.

Ecstasy

The Asylum Down headquarters of the party was a spectacle to behold when the results started coming in, with people popping champagne.

By that time, supporters had started trooping to the Efua Sutherland Children?s Park, where a stage had been set for the official declaration of the results by officials of the Electoral Commission (EC)?who did not only conduct but supervised the election.

Jubilant members and supporters of the NPP danced to blurring music from a public address system that had been mounted at the place with a heavy police presence.

Supporters of all the three contestants were seen dancing and sometimes poking fun at one another.

When all was set, leading members of the party started filing in to take their seats at the event?s venue.

The outcome of the polls had become public since most had been monitoring from various radio reports, even though provisional.

Nana Akufo-Addo?s triumphant entry to the park sent the entire place agog, with his supporters trying as much as possible not only to catch a glimpse of the man, but also getting an opportunity to shake hands with him.

Nana was ushered into the place by motor-riding party activists.

His security details and the police on duty did not have it easy meandering through the thick crowd from the entrance of the park to the place where the stage had been prepared.

When he finally found his way to the stage and waved at the crowd, the whole place became electrified.

Concession

Not too long thereafter, EC officials came up to announce the results and declared Akufo-Addo winner of the contest. He will therefore lead the NPP to the 2016 crucial general elections as its flagbearer.

This was followed by concession speeches by defeated Francis Addai-Nimoh and Alan Kyerematen who pledged support for Akufo-Addo.

They have since indicated their commitment to help work to bring the party to power.

In an open show of support and endorsement of Nana Addo?s presidential candidature, Mr Kyerematen pledged to ?stand solidly behind Nana Akufo-Addo so that in 2016 the NPP can come back to power.?

?As you know, contests between Nana Akufo-Addo and Alan Kyerematen can be likened to the competitive matches between Hearts and Kotoko. But I?m not sure who represents Kotoko and who represents Hearts. But you know, regardless of the score line between Kotoko and Hearts, we always make sure we give our fans a lot to cheer about?.so I would like all of us to stand solidly behind Nana Addo Dankwa to ensure that in 2016, NPP comes back to power,? he cheerfully stated.

Then came the moment most of them had been waiting for, when Akufo-Addo rose to his feet to deliver his acceptance speech, thanking the rank and file of the party for the confidence reposed in him and promised to win election 2016 for the party.

Confidence

?We have now to gird up our loins, put ourselves together and get ready to face the big battle of 2016. We in the NPP have a sacred, two-fold duty. We must rid our country, through the peace of the ballot box, of this incompetent NDC government of John Dramani Mahama, and relieve the Ghanaian people of the unjustifiable hardships and difficulties they are encountering,? he said.

He continued, ?We are then to form a government for Ghana where we will reverse the decline of our nation, do the work of the Ghanaian people with integrity and bring about their rapid progress and prosperity,? declaring ?We have the men and women who can do it.?

Nana said, ?We can fulfil, in our generation, the dreams and ambitions of our founding fathers to build a free, prosperous, modern African nation, governed on the principles of democratic accountability, the rule of law and social justice. Let us be up-and-doing.?

Kufuor?s Message

Minutes after the results of the election were declared, former President John Agyekum Kufuor sent a congratulatory message to Nana Akufo-Addo for the resounding and overwhelming victory.

The former President, who is currently in Italy for a meeting, sent the message to him in a letter in which he assured Nana Akufo-Addo of his full support ahead of the 2016 general elections.

?I assure you of my fullest support in the contest ahead,? were his exact words.

He claimed the peaceful conclusion of the election was ?a decisive testament to the strength of our party?s tradition of democracy and people?s power.?

Mr Kufuor stressed the need for the newly elected flagbearer to ?rally the entire party behind you for the onward march for victory, both in the presidential and parliamentary elections of 2016.

?The peaceful conclusion of this conference is a decisive testament to the strength of our party?s tradition of democracy and people?s power.

?Perhaps, it is needless for me to reiterate, as I am sure you are already committed, that you should do your utmost best to rally the entire party behind you for the onward march for victory both in the presidential and parliamentary elections of 2016. The nation and the party expect this of you.

?The competition that the other contestants offered was good and in the spirit of democracy which is the foundation of our tradition.

?I assure you of my fullest support in the contest ahead,? he stated.

Losers? Party

Former General Secretary of the party, Kwadwo Owusu Afriyie, aka Sir John, was overwhelmed with the results from various polling stations.

According to Sir John, he was very happy Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo emerged as winner.

Speaking to the media at Nana Addo?s residence at Nima, the former NPP chief scribe promised to hold a feast for Nana Addo?s competitors after the elections.

He explained that it would be a symbol for togetherness as the two (Alan Kyerematen and Francis Addai-Nimoh) would join to win power for the party in the 2016 elections.

He further noted that Nana Addo would not jubilate over the victory. ?I will rather rejoice and organise a party for Alan and Addai-Nimoh,? he assured.

By Charles Takyi-Boadu

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