The Member of Parliament for Bawku Central, Mahama Ayariga, has shot down claims that elections in Ghana are won through money and gifts to party delegates and voters.
According to Mr Ayariga, “It is just a myth, resources as in using money to buy the conscience of voters has never been true. It is a myth.”
He made this known when he appeared on GhToday on GHOne TV on Monday, April 12, 2021, while campaigning for younger persons to attempt flagbearership positions in their various parties without “intimidation” from "old names" in the political scene.
“Young people across the country have the energy, the capacity and now, the technology exists. Someone can win the presidency without putting up a single billboard today because of social media. You can just design a social media billboard, If the young people are excited about it, it will catch fire and by the next morning, every young person would have seen it… without that candidate really spending lots of money, it just takes young people in alliance across the country determined that they want a change.”
“I can assure you that those billboards out there are not done by the candidates themselves… people make them and put it out there. When people are convinced by the candidate, they will put in the efforts… if they are committed. Trust me, the flagbearers don’t have those resources to fund all those activities.”
“If the delegates feel strongly about a particular person, you can bring the whole world to come share with them, they will take it and still vote for the person they know will be the best option for the party,” he asserted.
Mr Ayariga has therefore called on young people with presidential ambitions to take the bold step adding that their good deeds will follow them as delegates will reward them by voting in their favour even in cases where they are competing with a candidate who has a financial advantage.
“They (delegates) are on the ground and they know what’s best for the party. The issue of resources helps but it is a myth. Any young person in this country should be intimated by the question of resource if they are confident of offering leadership… I don’t want the older generation to bully us,” said Mr Ayariga.
However, Ghana’s former Attorney General, Ayikoi Otoo, also mentioned that some delegates are easy to have a “change of mind” when influenced by “something” during elections.
“At the end of the day, it is the delegates that will have to take the decision. Things can change rapidly getting to the time of elections, things will be thrown out there. That somehow resonates with the delegates and before you say jack, they’ve changed their mind. They might be going for an individual and then 'something' is thrown out there just about a week and before you see, everything has changed to the other side,” said the former Attorney General.