Competition for the executive leadership of a political party and the distribution of state patronage in Ghana is influenced by factional alignments and group interests. In December 2008 the National Democratic Congress (NDC) regained political power, and within months rifts appeared over the allocation of ministerial portfolios. The intra-party murmurings became public when two factions supported rival candidacies for the party's presidential nomination. The pro-Rawlings faction supported the candidacy of Nana Konadu Agyemang-Rawlings, and the anti-Rawlings bloc backed President John Evans Atta Mills. Drawing on Boucek's (2009) typology of factionalism, this article argues that factionalism within the NDC is a dynamic and complex process of informal groupings competing and jockeying for power to satisfy members' interests. It draws three conclusions: party factions are ad hoc groupings that are nurtured into a power bloc, and are constellated around particular individuals; factional conflicts are not rooted in ideology, but are based on differences in policy goals, interests and patronage; and, finally, factionalism fluctuates between cooperative and competitive phases.