Former President John Agyekum Kufuor has praised the New Patriotic Party (NPP) vice presidential candidate, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, describing him as an intelligent and wise economist, who has risen in the ladder of life, sharply due to his proven track record and proven knowledge in various areas, key among which is the economy.
The former President made these statements while addressing a Muslim prayer session, attended by leaders of the Zongo Community from all over the Ashanti Region, and the various District Chief Imams in the region on Saturday, at the Kumasi Central Mosque.
Former President Kufuor, while urging the leaders of the Zongo communities to throw their support behind the NPP, gave a detailed address on how he met Dr. Bawumia, and how Dr. Bawumia had displayed supreme qualities while he was at the Bank of Ghana, which had endeared him to many.
"Development does not come by itself. Development comes when you have good leaders who are trustworthy, and leaders who are competent and committed to your cause. I believe that it is God who directed Nana Akufo-Addo to choose Dr. Bawumia as his running mate. I met Dr. Bawumia many years ago, when he was far younger than now. I consider Bawumia as my son. "When I saw Bawumia, he was very young, but I immediately realised that he was extremely brilliant. God has given him a great mind, and thanks to God Almighty too, Bawumia, aside being knowledgeable, is endowed with wisdom.
"When I was the President, we went to a conference in London. I went with the Governor of the Bank of Ghana and Ministers of Finance to meet officials from various institutions and countries. "While the conference was ongoing, I noticed that a certain young man had taken his position behind the microphones.
"I was surprised, and wondered who he was and what he was going to say, but as he began talking, every point he made was full of knowledge and wisdom, and I could see the multinationals continuously nodding in agreement to the points he was making. I was remarkably surprised. After the meeting, I called him aside and asked him what his name was, he told me he was Bawumia. I urged him on to continue on the path he was, as it would take him far. He was not even 40 then."
Former President Kufuor also shared with the gathering how Dr. Bawumia emerged as Deputy Governor of the Bank of Ghana. According to the former President, when the position of Deputy Governor became vacant, Dr. Bawumia's name cropped up as one of the two at the Bank of Ghana best qualified to fill the position, despite his very young age. He noted that the other candidate was far older and experienced, and as well, held a bigger office than the one Dr. Bawumia was at the time holding. But, according to the ex-President, just before the appointment could be made, the other candidate decided to take up another job, which meant that Dr. Bawumia ultimately emerged as the only candidate, and to the former President, on hindsight, this was divine intervention at play.
The two-term President of the Republic noted that it was due to the hard work and ideas of Dr. Bawumia, and the then Governor, Paul Acquah, that saw Ghana achieve remarkable achievements in the area of the economy, and asked the Zongo leaders to give their full backing to Dr. Bawumia, as he was specially gifted with knowledge and leadership skills to partner Nana Akufo-Addo transform Ghana.
The Muslim prayers and interactions held at the Central Mosque were to pray for the peace of the nation during and after the upcoming general elections, and also to pray for the success of the NPP presidential ticket of Nana Akufo-Addo and Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, and was attended by the Regional Chief Imam, Abdul Mumin Haroun, and over 500 imams and leaders of the various Zongos.