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

Categories: Sub-Saharan Africa, Ghana, Elections, Good News, Politics
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 [1] of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) won Ghana's presidency on December 7 [2] 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 [3]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 [4], after he was defeated by opposition leader Adam Barrow.

Only days before he spoke out against supposed irregularities, he had accepted his defeat [5] 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 [13].

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 [16] 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 [17].

Mahama conceded defeat [18] 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 [24], 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 [34]in the northern part of the country and one factory in every 216 districts [35] 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 [38], reminded Ghanaians: