NPP, NDC BATTLE FOR TAMALE … John Mahama, Bawumiah lead assaults
With December Presidential and parliamentary elections just lurking around the corner, both the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the National Democratic Congress (NDC) are battling to take control of Tamale, a strategic constituency in the Northern Region and the stronghold of the NDC.
The Tamale seats were initially held by the NPP, but the tables turned in 2004 in favour of the NDC, who have held on to the seats since then.
With both President John Mahama and Dr. Mahamadu Bawumia, Nana Akufo-Addo’s running mate coming from the Northern Region, the two have intensified their campaigns in the area, to ensure that they get massive endorsement from their own people.
During his recent ‘Thank You’ tour, President Mahama pulled a record crowd ever witnessed in the history of Tamale, as thousands of people came out of their homes to welcome him. Reports suggest that it took him several hours to drive from the Airport to the city Centre.
Next to test his popularity was Dr. Bawumiah, who also brought business activities in the fourth largest city in the country to a standstill, as thousands of supporters poured onto the streets in their numbers to welcome him.
Arriving in the Northern Region from his eight (8) day tour of Brong Ahafo, Dr. Bawumia first paid courtesy calls on the chiefs of Yapei and Kusawgu, where he sought their support and prayers for the task ahead.
Dr. Bawumia then stopped at Sankpagla, where he addressed a community durbar of the chiefs and people. However, even before Dr. Bawumia could finish addressing the people of Sankpagla, over 400 motor cyclists from the Tamale Metropolis, who could no longer wait to see the Vice-Presidential candidate of the NPP, descended on Sankpagla to escort Dr. Bawumia to Tamale.
The highway from Sankpagla to Tamale was immediately taken over by onlookers and crowds, who all wanted to catch a glimpse of Dr. Bawumia, and joined the escorting party to the Tamale Metropolis.
Passengers in vehicles moving toward Tamale readily joined thousands of escorts, cheering and waving, as the convoy moved slowly into the Tamale City.
The situation in the Tamale Metropolis, when the team finally arrived, after almost an hour of slow procession, was even more exciting, as thousands of people and even more cyclists joined the spectacle, making the procession to the Zoegbeli Park even slower.
Not even the dawn of darkness could convince the over 5,000 people and cyclists, who were escorting Dr. Bawumia, of the need to hasten the pace of the procession.
It took Dr. Bawumia and his team another two hours of procession to get to the rally grounds from the entrance into the city, as men and women of all ages and children lined the streets in their numbers to cheer the man poised to become Ghana’s Vice-President, come January 7th 2013, with chants of “Change Is Here”, “Free Education” and “We are Moving Forward” dominating.
The size of the crowd escorting Dr. Bawumia saw all activities on the roads, pavements and adjoining areas coming to a stop.
The mood at the Zoegbeli Park was electrifying, as the tens of thousands of people who had defied a heavy rainstorm in the morning and the onset of darkness finally set eyes on Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, after some five hours of waiting.
The atmosphere became more charged when Dr. Bawumia mounted the platform to respond to the deafening cheers and chants of the thousands of people present.
Speaking at the Rally, Dr. Bawumia thanked the people of Tamale for demonstrating their true love for him as a true son of the city. He urged the people of the North to support Nana Akufo-Addo massively, as he had the proven competence, vision and commitment to see the North develop and bridge the gap between south and north.
“On behalf of Nana Akufo-Addo, I am assuring all of you that we would do the necessary hard work of selling our message of hope and transformation from hamlet to hamlet, village to village, town to town, city to city in Northern Ghana.
“We won’t leave any inch of space unaccounted for in this task of restoring hope to the North and when we are done, we know that the people of the North would reject the politics of deceit, propaganda and lies and fully endorse Nana Akufo-Addo and myself to lead us to the era of transformation that we all dream of”, he said.
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