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‘I NEVER WISHED FOR HIS JOB’ – Ato Forson On Minority Leader Appointment

Dr. Cassiel Ato Forson, the minority leader, has disclosed that he learned of his new role the evening before it was made public.

He said that, like the other members of the NDC legislative caucus, he had no input into the choice.

In his first interview since the news, which aired on JoyNews’ PM Express on Wednesday, he claimed that when the party’s national leadership briefed him in person about the decision, he was astonished by it.

“I was told the night before. It’s a decision that the party had made so they were informing me not for me to make a choice as to whether I’m going to accept it or not to accept it. But I took it like a call to duty.

“In fact, it shook me, it took me by surprise. But what I told you earlier is that I adapt so easily and that’s my biggest strength, it doesn’t take me a couple of minutes to adapt so I sat back and said ‘hey…’”

The Ajumako-Enyam-Essiam MP discussed his relationship with the former Minority leader, Haruna Iddrisu, and how it had helped him succeed.

“Let me put it this way, if there is any person in this House who has worked so hard for Haruna Iddrissu and worked for him, I don’t think there will be two people more than me. My loyalty to him is unquestionable.

“I’ve loved him; in fact, I’m a product of his leadership because he gave me room to work and to excel. It’s not every leader that will give his ranking the opportunity to excel at that magnitude.

“And I work for him; I go to him every morning, sit him down and brief him on a daily basis. The first thing I do when I get to Parliament, mostly before 9 am, is walk straight to his office…we’ll have our small meeting, I brief him for the day and then we disperse and go to the Floor. So we have that cohesion,” he said.

According to Dr Ato Forson, he is honoured to have been the one chosen to fill the “very big shoe” of his predecessor.

He said while he has “never wished for his job” he takes the appointment as an opportunity to “also step in and to lead the party.”

“So when I was told, my first concern was is he aware of it and how will he feel? But Haruna Iddrisu knows that I’ve never wished for his job.

“However, if at a point in time, one person will have to stand up and do something for the Caucus and I happen to be the one, I think it’s an honour for me to step in the very big shoes of my predecessor, Haruna Iddrisu.

“It’s a big decision…the party took a big decision it believes is the right decision. The NDC thinks where we’ve gotten to it needs a new general to take us to that kind of war, that’s how I interpreted it.

“Haruna has done his part and done it very well, his successes are out there for everybody to see. And clearly, the time has come for a new general to step into the fire. I recognise that and honestly, I take it as an opportunity to also step in and to lead the party,” he said.

He said immediately after being informed of the decision, “I called him [Haruna Iddrisu] to inform him about it.”

“As soon as I left the place I placed a phone call to him out of respect I have for him.”

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