Ghana Elections: Ex-President Mahama Rejects Result, Seeks Rerun

(COMBO/FILES) This combination of file pictures created on December 04, 2020 shows Ghana President, Nana Akufo-Addo (L) attends the fifty-sixth ordinary session of the Economic Community of West African States in Abuja on December 21, 2019, and Ghana’s President John Dramani Mahama (R) upon his arrival at the Elysee Palace in Paris, on September 27, 2016. (STEPHANE DE SAKUTIN, Kola SULAIMON / AFP)

 

Ghana’s opposition leader John Mahama, the runner-up in this month’s disputed presidential election, filed a case before the Supreme Court seeking a rerun of the vote which he has rejected as “fraudulent”.

He asked the court for an “order of mandatory injunction directing the Electoral Commission to proceed to conduct a second election”.

The petition charges that the announcement on December 9, two days after the vote, of victory for Mahama’s arch-rival Nana Akufo-Addo was “unconstitutional, null and void and of no effect whatsoever”.

The announcement was “made arbitrarily, capriciously, and with bias”, the petition reads.

Mahama, 62, also wants the court to restrain Akufo-Addo from “holding himself out as president-elect”.

The electoral commission declared 76-year-old Akufo-Addo winner with 51.59 percent of the vote, followed by Mahama with 47.36 percent.

Mahama told a news conference afterwards: “I stand before you tonight unwilling to accept the fictionalised results of a flawed election. We will take all legitimate steps to reverse this tragedy of justice.”

Observers, both Ghanaian and foreign, viewed polling in the West Africa country as generally free and fair, but police said five people were killed and 19 injured in election-related violence.

Akufo-Addo and Mahama had signed a symbolic peace pact ahead of the vote.

It was the third election battle between the rivals, and in 2012 it was Akufo-Addo who contested Mahama’s win.

Ghana Vote Count Tight As Accusations Fly

Former Ghanian President and candidate of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), John Dramani Mahama (L) and incumbent Ghanian President and candidate of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) Nana Akufo-Addo (R) exchange greetings after signing the presidential election peace pact in Accra, on December 4, 2020, ahead of the December 7, 2020 presidential elections
PIUS UTOMI EKPEI / AFP

 

 

The first regional results Wednesday in Ghana’s elections pointed to a tight race for the presidency after the two main camps traded heated words over accusations of electoral fraud.

The electoral commission published results from seven out of the country’s 16 regions, pointing to a narrow lead by opposition candidate John Mahama over outgoing president Nana Akufo-Addo.

Monday’s presidential and parliamentary vote, in a country viewed as a beacon of democracy in West Africa, has been viewed by observers as generally free and fair.

But Mahama late Tuesday accused Akufo-Addo of showing “credentials that are very undemocratic” and harnessing the military to sway the outcome.

“You cannot use the military to try and overturn some of the results in constituencies that we have won. We will resist any attempts to subvert the sovereign will of the Ghanaian people,” the 62-year-old former president said.

He made the accusations after rumours circulated on social media that he had conceded defeat.

Hours earlier, the presidency — releasing an unofficial tally — claimed Akufo-Addo was ahead with 52.25 percent of the vote, against Mahama’s 46.44 percent.

Information Minister Kojo Oppong Nkrumah told a press conference that allegations of intimidation by soldiers were false.

He also bluntly rejected Mahama’s claim that his party had won a majority, of 140 seats, in the 275-member parliament.

“No candidates at this stage should undermine the work of the EC (electoral commission), it is irresponsible and it would endanger the peace of this country,” Oppong Nkrumah warned.

Mahama and Akufo-Addo, 76, are old rivals who have faced off at the ballot box twice before.

Mahama was president for four years until 2016, before being succeeded by Akufo-Addo. Both of those elections were determined by small margins.

Despite the sharp words, Ghana has a history of electoral stability and grievances are typically pursued through the courts.

Akufo-Addo and Mahama on Friday signed a symbolic peace pact, which the 15-nation regional bloc ECOWAS urged “all political parties and their leadership to respect.”

In a statement, the Economic Community of West African States said, “We appeal to political parties and their followers to refrain from any conduct that may undermine the successful conclusion of the electoral process.”

-AFP

Ghana Elections: Polls To Open After Peace Pact

Ghana Elections: Polls To Open After Peace Pact Ghanaian citizens are going to the polls on December 7, 2016, to elect a new president, after all seven candidates in the election pledged to keep the process peaceful.

The leading candidates are incumbent President John Mahama and former Foreign Minister Nana Akufo-Addo.

The polls are expected to close later on Wednesday, while official results are to be announced within three days.

The candidates had signed a peace pact last week vowing to follow electoral rules.

However, clashes broke out on Monday in Chereponi, a small northern town on the border with Togo, leaving six people in a critical condition as a result.

Learn From Ghana’s Election, INEC Commissioner Tells Nigerians

The Cross River State Resident Electoral Commissioner, Mike Igini on Tuesday said Ghana will remain the pride of Africa as it stands as a model in African democracy which Nigeria must emulate.

Mr Igini, who was a guest on Channels Television’s breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily, said “the history of a people is a reflection of how they decide to conduct themselves.”

The INEC commissioner said Ghana has conducted six successful elections that has met both local and international standards and that the success is not far-fetched because the saying “Ghana First” applies that every Ghanaians should believe in the country.

He said Ghanaians are where they are today because they started a journey of change some years ago, remaining committed to the value of change and in making the country attain a higher level in Africa and West Africa Sub-region and that they also adopt new method which is the introduction of the biometric system in the election process.

“Some of the things I found in Ghana are quite interesting unlike in our own country; and of course we can see why we are where we are,” he said.

Obasanjo Dances Gangnam Style in Ghana

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo, who recently led an ECOWAS team of observers to monitor the Ghana’s general election, thrilled voters, electoral officials and fellow observers with the Gangnam style dance step.

Obasanjo sues for peaceful election process in Ghana

As Ghanaians go to the polls on Friday to elect their President and Parliament members, the Head of ECOWAS Observation Mission for the election, former Nigeria’s President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, has urged politicians and their followers to avoid bitterness and violence to ensure a peaceful, free and fair, transparent and credible elections.

“We are here as witnesses because Ghana matters to Ghanaians, Ghana is important to West Africa, Africa and the world at large,” Chief Obasanjo said on Ghana National Television on the eve of the election, which is being observed by a 250-strong ECOWAS Observer team.

Repeating the same theme on a programme on national radio, he urged the country’s politicians and their followers to trust established institutions – the judicial, electoral and security systems – and build on the blocks and reputation of peaceful elections in Ghana.

The head of mission, who has interacted with various stakeholder institutions, including political parties and personalities since his arrival on Monday, said his delegation “is reasonably satisfied,” with the level of preparation for Friday’s balloting.

There are 14.7 million biometric-registered voters, who will be electing the nation’s leader and members of the 275-seat Parliament.

As with most elections, Chief Obasanjo said the country might be going through “an election fever,” which is expected, but he expressed the hope that Ghanaians would live up to the country’s reputation.

ECOWAS observers have been deployed to the 10 administrative regions of Ghana to cover much of the 26,000 polling stations on polling day.

The regional Observation Mission will issue a Preliminary Declaration on Saturday on the conduct of the elections on Friday.

Obasanjo to lead ECOWAS election observers to Ghana

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo will lead a 250-member ECOWAS Election Observer Mission to Ghana’s general elections scheduled for 7 December 2012 within the context of the region’s instrument for provision of support to Member States holding elections.

This was disclosed in a statement by the commission.

According to the statement, the teams, comprising representatives of various segments of the West African society, will be in Ghana for nine days to observe the conduct of the Presidential, legislative and local elections, expected to contribute to the deepening of democratic culture in the country.

An ECOWAS assessment mission was in Ghana last October to review preparations for the elections during which the mission members met with various stakeholders, including representatives of political parties, civil society organizations and the national electoral commission, to discuss their perspectives on the preparations for the elections.

Through these missions, the region seeks to promote a culture of transparent and credible elections, consistent with best practices for the enhancement of regional peace and stability.