Osofo Kyiri Abosom rapid political rise – a force to be reckoned with (OPINION)

It sprang as a joke – some called the news a hoax, others ridiculed and trolled him – but his decision to contest in the 2020 general elections and the impact he made after the Electoral Commission declared the presidential election results changed the way people think about politics in Ghana. For Rev Christian Kwabena Andrews 'Osofo Kyiri Abosom', the 2020 presidential candidate of the Ghana Union Movement (GUM), it was just an endeavour at something unrelatable but he achieved more than he envisioned.

Osofo Kyiri Abosom

Nobody saw it coming this year. For someone whose only mission in life is to preach the word of God and dismember deities and gods, witches and wizards, and sorcery, his political ambition was considered a sham. Many assumed it’s a way of enlarging his fame – even though he is famous – and further his cause of winning new souls to his church. But his vision was unconventional. He cared less about tags and what people would say. He risked it all and launched a political career that would vanquish the big guns in this year’s election.

When the Political Science Department of the University of Ghana’s (UG) survey on this year’s election projected him as the third force in the presidential race, he called the bluff. “It is bogus research. There is nothing good that will come out of it,” he told the press last month. “It is going to prove to Ghanaians that these people are not truthful. This is bogus research. The outcome of the research will prove what I am telling you.”

His response showed his aim was higher than people anticipate. He had a positive mindset towards the elections. He had a distinctive fervour, coupled with immense intrepidity. In all this, he had his church – Osofo Kyiri Abosom Ministries – behind him.

His manifesto?

He believes in Dr Kwame Nkrumah’s ideologies and unity and was ready to industrialise Ghana’s agriculture as well as bolster the manufacturing industry. In his mini-manifesto, he said his party was poised to build a society of people, where tribalism, corruption, nepotism and cronyism would be a thing of the past.

His campaign strategy?

Mr Kwabena Andrews ditched urban areas for rural areas. He knew his strength and was ready to explore every avenue to capture important figures – and it worked. He didn’t hold big rallies like the top political parties – it was door-to-door campaigns in rural areas.

As a first-timer, he was able to conquer the big names in Ghana’s politics, including Nana Konadu Agyeman-Rawlings (NDP), Akua Donkor (GFP) and Ivor Kobina Greenstreet (CPP). He amassed 105,565 representing 0.805% out of the 13,434,574 votes cast in the presidential election – a huge step for a newcomer and a step in the right direction.

“Osofo Kyiri Abosom came third because he promised to revive all the companies and factories created by Dr Kwame Nkrumah which have collapsed,” Emmanuel Tornyi, senior political reporter at Pulse.com.gh says.

Evans Annan, a political analyst and journalist at Pulse.com.gh, believes his impact in this year's elections could be influenced by religion.

“Once again, the impact of religion in sub-Saharan Africa and Ghana to be specific has been manifested in the just ended 2020 general elections,” he says. “This can be attributed to the shocking performance of Osofo Kyiri Abosom and his GUM party by securing the 3rd position in the elections.”

“For many political pundits, this is solely due to the reverence people give to religious leaders and how high they hold such people in high esteem,” he added.

Mr Kwabena Andrews rapid, unexpected rise onto the political radar is a force to reckon with. He has the love, not from only his church members, but Ghanaians. He was seen as a distraction to this year’s election but his first shot hit the right spot – if not an ace.

Perhaps, what the late Sir John said is true: “Fear delegates, not ghosts”.

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