Managing Editor of The Daily Dispatch Ben Ephson says President John Dramani Mahama won the 2012 Elections by virtue of regionalism and not ethnicity “as being purported by some people”.
He explained this by saying that the presidential candidate of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) would have lost since his tribe, Gonja, is not liked by other tribes in the north.
Speaking on TV3’s 7GMT on Thursday, December 27, 2012, the renowned pollster said President Dramani was voted for by many because electorates wanted to give a candidate from the north of the country the chance to rule.
“It so happened in [Hilla] Limann’s time when people said there has been a long time since a northerner ruled the country,” he told host Roland Walker.
He said because the majority of electorates in the 2012 Elections was below 40 years, they were not around or were young when President Hilla Limann was president.
So the anxiety to give President Mahama the chance saw them vote for him.
He mentioned that the issue of judgement debt, which was one of the campaign weapons of the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) did not have its intended effect because of its timing – it obtained media attention in February 2012.
He said if it had happened three or fewer months before the elections, it would have had a disastrous effect for the NDC.
He also disclosed that before the death of President John Evans Atta Mills in July, 2012, the two major political parties – NDC and NPP – were at par with each other in all the polls his outfit had conducted.
“They were both at 46% or thereabout each,” he said.
He mentioned that the NPP’s message of asking electorates to vote for the Nana Addo-Bawumia ticket because of religion should also give a clue to candidates that sometimes campaigning on religion does not work.
He was quick to state that the outcome of the 2012 Elections should inform the “smaller” parties to come together to achieve the goal of giving the NPP and the NDC a run for their money.
“That is the only way we can have a third force in Ghanaian politics,” he said.
He admitted that the impending legal challenge of the Election 2012 Results by the NPP is an event he is looking forward to in 2013.
“I look forward to how it will go. It is going to be one of the highlights for me in the New Year.”