Ghanaian presidential elections go to run-off

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Wednesday, December 10, 2008

 
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Ghana's electoral commission announced on Wednesday that a run-off election must be held for the Ghanaian presidency. The commission said that the New Patriotic Party (NPP) candidate Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo won 49.13% of the vote, slightly more than the other main candidate, John Atta Mills of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), who obtained 47.92%. However, neither candidate reached the 50% mark needed to declare an outright winner.

Election poster for John Atta Mills

Six other candidates were also present on the ballot, stealing enough votes to prevent either candidate from winning half of the vote. The third-party candidate receiving the most votes was businessman Paa Kwesi Nduom representing the Convention People's Party (CPP), who took 1.3% of the vote.

Out of some 8.6 million votes cast, more than 200,000, or 2.4% of the full total, were rejected, which also may have helped prevent either candidate from reaching 50%. Overall voter turnout in the election was 69.52%.

The presidential candidates are vying to replace the incumbent president John Kufuor, who will be stepping down in January of next year after serving a maximum of two terms.

The electoral commission did not announce results of the simultaneous parliamentary elections, but preliminary results suggest that the NDC obtained no less than 115 seats, out of a total of 230 in the parliament. It is probable that the NPP will lose the large parliamentary majority it had enjoyed.

The run-off election is scheduled for the 28th of December.


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