Ghanaians have elected Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, the candidate of the main opposition party, New Patriotic Party (NPP), as their new president.
Akufo-Addo, 72, who ran for the office for the third time, comfortably edged out incumbent president, John Mahama of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) by almost 10 points.
The Electoral Commission of Ghana (ECG) tweeted late on Friday, two days after the election, that Akufo-Addo was the victor in the largely peaceful poll.
“We declare Nana Akufo-Addo as President-Elect of our Ghana. God bless Ghana. Thank you,” ECG tweeted.
A breakdown of the result showed that NPP won 53.85 percent of total vote cast while the ruling party managed to score just 44.4 percent of the votes.
The announcement confirmed the projections of the local media, which have predicted from provisional results and result collated from polling stations that the opposition candidate was on course to unseating the incumbent.
Clearly, Mahama, 58, couldn’t sway enough voters with several infrastructural projects it was building all over the country, as voters were more concerned about worsening power cuts, dwindling economic growth in the resource-rich country, and the his inability to rein in corrupt officials.
Akufo-Addo, a former foreign minister, has made the country’s worsening corruption the focus of his campaign.
Friday evening, Akufo-Addo, tweeted that Mr. Mahama has called to congratulate him on his election victory.
The challenge before Akufo-Addo is how to achieve some of his mouth watering campaign promises, some of which critics have described as unrealistic. During the campaign, he promised to create jobs through the establishment of at least one factory in every district in the country.
He criticised the incumbent for centering most of its development plans in Accra and Kumasi, the two biggest cities in the country.
Sesan Adeola with agency reports