July 19, 2024
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2024 polls: You can’t win with less than 64% in internal primaries – Franklin Cudjoe

Founding President of IMANI Africa, Franklin Cudjoe has said that no candidate has gone on to win the general elections if the person had obtained less than 64% of the vote in the internal primaries.

This comes on the back of Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia’s election as the Presidential candidate of the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) to lead the party to the 2024 general election.

He polled 118,210 representing 61.47% votes in the Presidential primary held across the country on Saturday, November 4, 2023, which had about 210,000 delegates casting their ballot.

His closest contender, Member of Parliament for Assin Central, Ken Agyapong polled 71, 996 votes.

In a Facebook post, the President of IMANI Africa stated that votes obtained by Vice President Mahamudu Bawumia in their presidential primaries will be difficult for him to win 2024 general elections.

“No candidate in Ghana’s history has gone on to win the general elections if s/he obtained less than 85% of the vote in internal primaries, except in 2000, which was a very special election (the country had never before seen a switch of power through the ballot).

“No candidate has gone on to win the general elections if s/he had obtained less than 64% of the vote in the internal primaries,” Mr. Cudjoe stated.

He continued: “The Veep’s projected 61.5% victory in today’s primaries was lower than the 68% victory he won during the Super-Delegate pre-primaries. This is consistent with the theory that the grassroots are less excited by him than are the elites.”

Below is the full statement by Franklin Cudjoe

The Calculus of Ghana’s 2024 Elections
_________________________________________

Yesterday, based on the routine political risk & political economy analysis done at IMANI, I wrote a short essay on the likely permutations of Ghana’s ruling party primaries, which came off today. I pointed out that the favourite to win the elections, the Veep, will be denied a coronation, against the wishes of the party elites and gatekeepers, because he has lost some of his shine with the grassroots. Provisional results of the primaries are in, and with them an updated sense of how the 2024 elections are likely to pan out if nothing much changes dramatically.

1. No candidate in Ghana’s history has gone on to win the general elections if s/he obtained less than 85% of the vote in internal primaries, except in 2000, which was a very special election (the country had never before seen a switch of power through the ballot).

2. No candidate has gone on to win the general elections if s/he had obtained less than 64% of the vote in the internal primaries.

3. The Veep’s projected 61.5% victory in today’s primaries was lower than the 68% victory he won during the Super-Delegate pre-primaries. This is consistent with the theory that the grassroots are less excited by him than are the elites.

4. The Veep’s results are despite one of his main rivals dropping out of the race. It is very likely that his tally would have dropped to the low fifties if this rival had stayed because this rival’s followers do not have a high cross-over with the followers of the runner-up in the just-ended primaries, an eccentric business man & MP.

5. The biggest risk to manage in the aftermath of the elections for the ruling NPP is the runner-up in the primaries seeking to undermine the Veep’s candidacy in the general elections in any way. The rival who dropped out is already gearing up to run as an independent in 2024. He needs to win just 2% of the vote to ensure an automatic win for the Opposition. But this is a high bar. The runner-up, on the other hand, would easily win 10% plus of the national vote in the unlikely event that he goes independent due to his “Ross Perot” level of disruptive influence. The ruling party will move Heaven & Earth to prevent this.

6. Whilst the Veep’s performance in the primaries and the government’s falling out of favour due to the economic crisis works strongly in favour of the Opposition party, should none of the scenarios in point 5 occur, the ruling NPP still has a path to a narrow presidential victory (while losing their slim Parliamentary technical majority). This is due to a “Northern” and “Muslim” dynamic that the Veep is introducing to unsettle the electoral equilibrium in Ghana. If the Opposition fails to respond with their own “Akan heartland” dynamic, they risk a narrow defeat in the presidential polls. For further explanation, the essay is below.

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