Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Nana Rawlings formally launches bid to challenge incumbent John Atta Mills

Nana Konadu Agyeman Rawlings has formally launched her bid to challenge incumbent John Atta Mills for the National Democratic Congress (NDC) nomination ahead of the 2012 elections. Rawlings' husband, former president Jerry John Rawlings, has criticised Mills' “indecisive” leadership ever since he took office in January 2009.

The 62-year-old Nana Rawlings and her supporters say that Mills has not stayed true to NDC principles. On collecting her nomination papers on 3rd May, Rawlings told reporters it was “the beginning of taking the country Ghana back where it belongs”.

It is the first time since Ghana's return to democracy in 1992 that a sitting President has been challenged as party leader. Analysts say it shows divisions within the ruling NDC and a desire by former president Rawlings to increase his influence.

Jerry John Rawlings seized power in a military coup in both 1979 and 1981. He then served as elected president from 1993 to 2001, during which time President Mills served as his Vice-President.

Nana Rawlings is popular with her party's women's wing but Mills looks likely to win the nomination, unless other more credible candidates join the contest.

Some 2,500 NDC delegates will cast their vote for party leader at the party congress in July.

For more news and expert analysis about Ghana, please see Ghana Politics & Security.

© 2011 Menas Associates

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