Ghana: a smooth transfer of power


Opposition leader Nana Akufo-Addo won Ghana’s presidential election on 9 December 2016 with 53.85% of the vote against incumbent President John Dramani Mahama who won 44.40% of the vote. The voter turnout was 68.62%. It was Akufo-Addo’s third time running for president in Ghana. In 2012, he lost against President Mahama by only 300 000 votes. Despite the traditionally close presidential election results in Ghana, Mahama conceded defeat and paved the way for another smooth transfer of power in that country. Ghana has confirmed its reputation as a model of democracy in West Africa. A large number of West African presidents attended the inauguration ceremony that was held on 7 January 2017 in Accra. However, accusations of plagiarism overshadowed the swearing-in ceremony. The president’s address used quotes from speeches by US presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, which created an outcry on social media about plagiarism. During the campaign, the economy and job creation were at the heart of the campaign discussions. “Ghana is open for business again,” was one of the newly elected president’s key messages. Indeed, President Akufo-Addo won the election with his promise of “Change: an Agenda for Jobs - Creating Prosperity & Equal Opportunity for All.” Despite good growth prospects that are  estimated to be 8.7% in 2017  by the African Economic Outlook, Ghana is among the most indebted African countries (rank 7) and still fights against high inflation (10.2% in 2016 compared to 17.2% in 2015). Nana Akufo-Addo has become the 5th president of Ghana, a country that will celebrate 60 years of independence on 6 March 2017.

Nana Akufo-Addo’s statement:

Official website of President Nana Akufo-Addo: