Ghana Proves That Peaceful, Free and Fair Elections Are Not a Dream in Africa

Ghana's President Elect Nana Akufo-Addo paying homage to Nii Okwei Kinka Dowuona VI, King of the Ga people. Creative Commons image by Kabil75.

Ghana's President Elect Nana Akufo-Addo paying homage to Nii Okwei Kinka Dowuona VI, King of the Ga people. Creative Commons image by Kabil75.

Opposition leader Nana Akufo-Addo of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) won Ghana's presidency on December 7 standing as a candidate for the third time. Akufo-Addo got 53.85% of the votes in the election, while outgoing President John Mahama got 44.4%.

In a continent where elections are often marred by violence, rigging, election-day internet shutdowns and other irregularities, the peaceful nature of Ghana's election cemented its position as a beacon of democracy in Africa. The international community has praised the country for the way the elections were managed.

Just recently, Gambia's president Yahya Jammeh, who has been in power for 22 years, rejected the election result, after he was defeated by opposition leader Adam Barrow.

Only days before he spoke out against supposed irregularities, he had accepted his defeat and phoned Barrow to congratulate him on his victory, informing him that he bore “no ill will”. Apparently, he had a change of heart.

Echoing similar sentiments, Kenyan lawyer Chris Mwangi tweeted:

He was not completely right, though, as Gary Al-Smith pointed out:

Akwasi Sarpong, Ghanaian BBC presenter, reacted to the victory of the opposition NPP by sharing one curious fact:

Since 1992 when Ghana introduced multiparty democracy, voters in Ghana and USA have indeed been following a similar pattern.

Ghanaian blogger and writer Jemila Abdulai underscored the maturing nature of Ghana's democracy:

Another Twitter user shared the following interesting fact:

Supporters of the President-Elect Nana Akufo-Addo celebrated his victory with the campaign song of the losing candidate John Mahama, ‘Onaapo’. The song has become so popular that Ghanaian musician Barima Sidney has already released a remix of the song.

Mahama conceded defeat and called Akufo-Addo to congratulate him even before the official results were released.

Silver Kayondo noted:

Kuukuwa Manful wrote:

Akufo-Addo's father Edward Akufo-Addo, was non-executive President of Ghana from 1970 till 1972.

Masesebe Wa Ramahuma, a South African reporter, expressed the following wish:

Greenbook Ghana, a platform that showcases the achievements of outgoing President Mahama, looks forward to two of the main election promises that were made by Akufo-Addo.

Akufo-Addo has promised one irrigation dam for every village in the northern part of the country and one factory in every 216 districts in the country, campaign pledges that many believe are unfeasible to fulfil.

Twitter user Ikon Massive took a dig at Ghana's neighbour, Nigeria:

Finally, Kinna, the project lead for @GhanaDecides, reminded Ghanaians:

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