Ghana’s vice president prevails in the initial voting for the 2024 nomination.

Ghana’s vice president prevails in the initial voting for the 2024 nomination.

Mahamudu Bawumia, the Vice President of Ghana, has emerged victorious in the first round of voting within his ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) primary elections. This internal party election is aimed at selecting the NPP’s candidate for the upcoming 2024 presidential ballot. The official results, announced on August 26, 2023, reveal that Bawumia secured approximately 68% of the votes from party delegates, placing him far ahead of his competitors.

As Ghana’s current President, Nana Akufo-Addo, is stepping down after serving two terms, Bawumia has been prominently regarded as a leading contender by analysts and pollsters to represent the NPP in the presidential race scheduled for December 2024.

Bawumia’s impressive victory has positioned him as one of the top five NPP contenders, who will proceed to the final primary ballot on November 4. His main rivals in this internal election were Alan Kyerematen, a former trade minister, who secured 10.29% of the votes, and Kennedy Agyapong, a notable lawmaker, with 14.3% of the votes.

Political observers have noted Bawumia’s marketability and widespread support among influential party members, often referred to as super delegates. This is attributed to his notable performance as the Vice President and his background as a former deputy governor of the central bank.

The NPP’s recent primary election results were officially certified by electoral authorities. Ghana is currently grappling with a severe economic crisis and has sought assistance through a $3 billion loan agreement with the International Monetary Fund to address its debt challenges.

If Bawumia secures the NPP’s candidacy, he could potentially become the first Muslim leader of the party, which has historically been dominated by ethnic Akan leaders. This shift in dynamics reflects his strong position as a frontrunner.

Despite concerns expressed by some party members about electing a sitting vice president amidst economic challenges, Bawumia’s camp highlights his established track record in both opposition and government roles, as well as his expertise in economics. Analysts believe that Bawumia’s economic background aligns well with the central issue of the economic crisis, making him a suitable candidate for the party in the lead-up to the 2024 polls.

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