Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo
Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, the New Patriotic Party (NPP) presidential candidate in both the 2008 and 2012 elections, has been named as Ghana?s Most Influential Personality for 2013.
Nana Akufo-Addo becomes the first politician to win the award instituted by e.TV Ghana, a private TV station, since 2009 to honour personalities who distinguished themselves in their service to the country.
Past winners were Peter Cardinal Appiah Turkson (2010), Joseph Siaw Agyapong ? CEO of Jospong Group of Companies, the parent company of Zoomlion (2011), and Roland Agambire ? Founder of the Agams Group of Companies (2012), parent company of rLG.
The award has been designed such that the top 20 out of 100 most influential personalities are listed for special recognition and Nana Akufo-Addo?s name came first among the nominees.
Nana Akufo-Addo is currently holidaying in London and is expected to return to the country on January 27, 2014 after which he would receive his award at an event to be organized by e.TV Ghana.
According to e.TV, other nominees apart from Nana Akufo-Addo are National Chief Imam, Sheikh Osman Nuhu Sharubutu, Dr. Mensa Otabil of the ICGC, Justice William Anaam Atuguba, a justice of the Supreme Court, Black Stars Coach Kwesi Appiah and ace investigative journalist, Anas Aremeyaw Anas.
Others are President John Dramani Mahama, former President John Agyekum Kufuor, NPP Vice Presidential Candidate, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, former Attorney-General and anti corruption crusader, Martin A.B.K. Amidu, Prince Kofi Amoabeng of UT Bank and former President Jerry John Rawlings.
The rest are Rev. Fr. Campbell, Manasseh Azure Awuni, a journalist, Asantehene Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, Cardinal Peter Appiah Turkson, Alan Kwadwo Kyerematen, Osei Kwame ?Despite?, Roland Agambire and Archbishop Nicholas Duncan-Williams.
Noticeably, there was no woman listed in the top 20 and no woman has ever won the award either, since its inception.
Even though the organizers did not mention what could have contributed to their decision, it is believed that Nana Akufo-Addo?s willingness to wholeheartedly accept the verdict of the Presidential Election Petition which he, together with two others filed at the Supreme Court, might have influenced matters.
In spite of the fact that some of his party members were not in agreement with the verdict delivered by the nine justices on August 29 after the disputed 2012 presidential election, Nana Akufo-Addo impressed upon his followers to accept it in the interest of Ghana?s peace and democracy.
From the beginning till the aftermath of the court proceedings, which was seen as a major test for Ghana?s current democratic dispensation, Nana Akufo-Addo comported himself and this won him accolades from both local and international quarters.
In the news release last Friday announcing the award winners, e.TV Ghana said, ?Now in its fourth year, the e.TV Ghana Most Influential Awards is an annual event organized by the station to recognize Ghanaians who made a great impact on the Ghanaian society during the year under review.
?E.TV officially started the process for the 2013 edition of the Ghana?s Most Influential Awards in November when nominations opened for the public to nominate personalities they believed were most influential in the year 2013.
?Nominations were solicited from the streets, via text through a short code, and via e.TV Ghana?s Facebook page and website.?
According to the TV station, ?Unlike previous years when public voting constituted 100 percent of the voting, the voting system for the 2013 edition was revised.
?Public voting was 75 percent, the online voting was given a five percent voting weight, whilst a specially constituted committee had a 20 percent voting weight, totalling 100 percent.?
The entire voting process was verified, vetted and approved by Pannell Kerr Forster (PKF), one of the top five most respected audit firms in the country.
Eric Tettefio, a Senior Partner at Pannell Kerr Forster said ?we have reviewed and vetted the processes for the nominations and the voting mechanism for Ghana?s Most Influential Awards and we confirm that it is transparent and the final list is very credible.?
Rosemond Aryeetey, Head of Corporate Communications at Global Media Alliance, owners of e.TV Ghana, said, ?We heartily congratulate all the honourees, and look forward to a memorable awards ceremony with the top 100 most influential personalities later in the year.?
By William Yaw Owusu