Two of the 2020 presidential candidates, Messrs Hassan Ayariga and Kofi Akpaloo, have shared their views with the Daily Graphic on why they lost the just-ended 2020 presidential election.
While Mr Ayariga alleged that his refusal to bribe the electorate just like many candidates cost him the votes he needed to catapult him onto the presidential seat, Mr Akpaloo said his failure to put in effective youth and women structures from the grass roots to the national level led to his inability to realise his presidential ambition.
Prior to the elections, Mr Ayariga had told the Daily Graphic that his party remained the favourite to win the elections.
According to him, one of the two leading political parties — the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the National Democratic Congress (NDC) would fall by the way side to force the elections into a second round, where his All People’s Party (APC) with him as the presidential candidate would eventually emerge the winner.
Mr Akpaloo was also optimistic that his message of empowering the youth and offer them employable skills, as well as creating enabling environment for Ghana to prosper, had gone deep down to offer him the presidential seat.
After the elections however, Mr Ayariga said because many of the electorate had perceived politicians as corrupt and insensitive to their plight after voting them into power, “ they decided to demand their pound of flesh from me by demanding money from me before casting their votes for me”.
“ My brother, can you believe that many of the electorate were demanding as low as GH¢10 and GH¢20 from me with the firm assurance that if I yielded to their demands, they would vote massively for me? He questioned.
When asked why he did not yield to their demands for him to realise his presidential ambition, Mr Ayariga said that would have dented his image.
“ Yielding to their demands would have implied that I also had to indulge in corrupt practices when I become president so that I can recoup the money I used to bribe them. This is something I will never do in my life”.
Expressing concern about the bribery scandal by the electorate, he said Ghana would eventually become the loser because genuine politicians would always be side-stepped for the corrupt ones to the detriment of accelerated national development.
Diagnosing the symptoms that cost him his presidential ambition, the Liberal Party of Ghana (LPG) candidate, Mr Akpaloo, said it was due to his failure to put in the needed structures from the grass roots to the national level.
He, however, explained that he was still young, and was, therefore, optimistic about his chances in the future.
“ I need to have youth organisations from the grass roots right from the zonal to the national levels who would be at the forefront of propagating my messages across the country”.