It was a stinging defeat; he least expected it. All along, he thought the Ghanaian electorate was going to extend his stay in office by giving him another four years. But everything fell flat on election-day in 2016. The then opposition NPP had managed to pull off a spectacular victory, and he was left holding the bag.
Well, after nearly two years of compelled political hibernation, he is back and rearing to go; determined to avenge his defeat and prove the sceptics, and legion of doubters wrong.
Mr. John Dramani Mahama, the former President whose comeback was carefully orchestrated and plotted but nonetheless was an open secret, has vowed to make things right this time if Ghanaians would give him a second look.
I have very little doubt that the former president will emerge victorious in the NDC presidential primaries. The competition lined up against him is visibly and inherently weak.
None of the other aspirants matches Mr. Mahama in charisma and appeal nor in finance. Witness the large enthusiastic crowds that came out to greet his return in the central and northern regions? It was a sight to behold.
But, Mr. Mahama’s supporters should not be carried away by the warm welcome he has received. The opposition is lying in wait, ready to pounce at the right time; in fact, it is salivating at the prospect of the former president running again for the much coveted office in the land.
He has a six year record that the opposition will scrutinize, attack and undermine, all with a view to gaining ground among increasingly skeptical Ghanaian voters.
All told, Mr. Mahama has his hands full; regaining the power that he once wielded, and the influence and prestige he once enjoyed, will not be an easy undertaking.
He will have a lot of convincing and persuasion to do irrespective of the fact that Ghanaians are currently going through hard financial and economic times.
They won’t allow him to exploit their dire situation to his political advantage. They will ask hard questions about the concrete steps that he will take were he returned to power, to make their lives and that of their children better.
No platitudes this time, Mr. Mahama. You must better be prepared with adequate answers other than to say not all politicians lie except the NPP. That won’t sell.