Ghanaian elections: Another test for Africa ~ Abang Mercy @AbangMercy

Published:6 Dec, 2012

Kofi Annan one of the most cerebral UN Secretary Generals ever to have graced the UN House in New York once said that when elections are conducted in integrity, without being disfigured by election motivated violence are the ingredients of true democracy.

With the fore going there is no gainsaying that, flawed elections create unrest, as contenders stubbornly refuse to accept or display the sportsmanship that comes with all contests. It is this singular bane of not accepting defeat of the electoral races that has set back development by several decades -especially for nations of Africa. Ghana and Ghanians are set for a fifth round of elections and if the death of former President Attah Mills is a deciding factor on the Ghanaian democracy and institution, then it will be safe to say that Ghana has well earned its title as the “beacon of democracy in Africa’’
So far, the process has been a neck to neck race between the incumbent President John Dramani Mahama, of the National Democratic Congress (NDC),and the 2nd time contender Nana Dankwa Akufo-Addo, of the New Patriotic Party (NPP).

As an avid observer of elections within the continent, these are my thoughts. During the 2008 Ghanaian elections, the tie between the late Atta Mills and Nana Akufo was incredibly close, so close that it took some 50, 000 votes to make the late Mills, president, edging his then opponent Mr. Nana by a mere 5 percent.

However this time around, the tides have changed for obvious reasons, it is the social media elections as well as the oil boom elections, even the campaign strategies have taken a 360 turn. For its economy, Ghana currently generates an average of 85,000 barrels per day, this is a drastic change from 2008 when the nation relied on cocoa export receipts for major income earnings.

The campaigns have seen, Ghanaians being wooed by the major candidates with various promises ranging from Mr. Nana’s free high school policy to Mahama’s promise to make the polytechnic a degree awarding institution.
As the 13 million Ghanaian biometric registered voters prepare to go to the polls to elect a new helmsman, violence is gradually rearing its viciousness on the scene; at the Ashtown of Kumasi, there have been violent attacks and reprisals leading to shootings, matcheting and the looting of shops just in the build up to election day . From the poor North to the rich South, uncertainty greets the process.
Before the 2007 Kenyan elections, several election analysts held that the process had undergone a thorough democratic test, and would withstand any electoral turbulence; an assertion which proved wrong as Kenyans witnessed what is today described as one of the continent’s worse political, economic, and humanitarian electoral unrest crises which erupted after incumbent President Mwai Kibaki was declared winner of the Presidential election.
No one expected the election process to turn out the way it did. No incident was reported on election day as Kenyans were determined to see a successful process. Shortly after the provisional results started pouring into the mainstream media houses and reported live; the results came out otherwise from the way voters alleged they voted, this became a shocker and the aftermath is now our story.
For the forthcoming Elections in Ghana, the European Union is reported to have declined an invitation to observe. In their calculation, Ghana has proved its democratic maturity beyond doubt, and can manage its own electoral affairs without external supervision. One hopes that this level of maturity grows on other emerging democracies in Africa, to wash away the belligerence associated with elections. However the rhetorical question remains -will the 2012 Ghanian elections alter growing political permutations?


Best Regards

Mercy Abang
Election Observer/New Media Enthusiast
Journalist/Blogger/Managing Editor
E: bussytupcy2003@yahoo.com
E: epacampaign@gmail.com
Twitter: AbangMercy
Facebook: AbangMercy

Related Posts

Recent Posts

FG Urged To Ignore Call To Close Turkish Schools In Nigeria

The Managing Director of Nigerian Turkish international colleges, Orhan Kertim, has said that Nigeria should disregard the request by Turkey’s Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr Hakan Cakil, to close down the schools. This is contained in a statement he gave to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), in Abuja on Friday. He said the call contained misleading information and would not have dignified it with a response. According to Kertim, the schools have been operating in Nigeria since 1998 and as law-abiding schools...

Buhari Approves BoT For Ogoniland Cleanup

President Muhammadu Buhari has approved a 13-member Governing Council and 10-member Board of Trustees for the cleanup of Ogoniland in Rivers. The Minister of Environment, Mrs Amina Mohammed, announced this in a statement by Permanent Secretary of the ministry, Dr Bukar Hassan, in Abuja on Saturday. The minister said the structures would ensure inclusiveness, accountability, transparency and sustainability of the exercise. Mohammed acknowledged the concerns raised by stakeholders on the perceived slow pace of...

7 Of The Best Places To Meet Your Future Partner

1. Don’t skip work happy hour Even if you’ve already determined that you will never date any of your coworkers, join in on every office happy hour you can. You never know who may bring an outside friend along or where you could end up after the happy hour is over. Chances are most of your work friends are pretty cool people so you can rely on them to broaden your network of potential partners.

Why We Deployed Air Force To Dislodge Arepo Vandals- Military

The military has defended its decision to dislodge vandals and militants operation at Arepo with Air Force strikes, saying it was due to the inaccessibility of the swampy hideouts of the criminals. It said the joint operation involving the Army, Police, State Security Service (SSS) and Civil Defence engaged the Air Force to capture wider latitude of the vandals’ shanties and nab suspected operatives. The military swung into action last Thursday following a directive of...

Buhari Appoints Five Heads Of Health Agencies

President Muhammadu Buhari has approved with immediate effect the appoint¬ments of five heads of strategic health institutions. The Director (Press), Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Bolaji Adebiyi, said in a statement. The health agencies are, Centre for Disease Control, National Agency for the Control of AIDS (NACA), Nigerian Institute for Medical Research (NIMR), National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), and National Health Insurance Scheme, (NHIS). According to the statement, Babatunde Sa¬lami has been appointed...

Reps Say No Need For External Probe Of Dogara, Others

Members of the House of Reps Committee on Appropriation said yesterday that there was no breach whatsoever in the 2016 budget process that would warrant the probe of Speaker Yakubu Dogara, his deputy Yussuf Suleimon Lasun, chief whip, Alhassan Ado Doguwa and minority leader, Leo Ogor. Addressing a press conference yesterday in Abuja, deputy chairman of the committee, Rep Chris Emeka Azubogu (PDP, Anambra), who was accompanied by eight other members of the committee, said...

Lagos Urges Residents To Volunteer Information To Security Agencies To Combat Crime?

The Lagos State Government yesterday reassured residents of its ability to combat all forms of crime within the state just as it reaffirmed its commitment to prompt response to all crime incidents reported by residents to the various security agencies. The Special Adviser to the Governor on Communities and Communication, Mr. Kehinde Bamigbetan, spoke at the monthly interactive session held at Ikorodu with the theme ‘Securing our Communities’ organised by the Ministry of Local Government and...

Switzerland Pledges To Repatriate $321m Abacha Loot

The government of Switzerland has said it would soon return $321 million looted by late head of state, General Sani Abacha and kept in Swiss banks, as part of its commitment to fighting money laundering and other trans-national crimes in that country. The Swiss Ambassador to Nigeria, Eric Mayoraz, made the disclosure yesterday, during the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding on Mutual Legal Assistance on criminal matters, between the Swiss government and the Federal...

3 Militant Groups Accept To Dialogue With Buhari

Three militant groups in the Niger Delta region, Reformed Egbesu Boys of the Niger Delta, Egbesu Red Water Lions and Egbesu Mightier Fraternity have capitulated on their earlier decision not to allow the Niger Delta Dialogue and Contact Group, NDDCG, to represent them in the ongoing dialogue with the Federal Government. A former military governor of old Rivers State, His Royal Majesty Alfred Diette-Spiff is the leader of NDDCG, which is a member of the Aaron...

Another Chained Child Rescued In Ogun As Culprit Flees- Police

The Ogun Police Command has rescued   another child, 10-year-old Promise Udeh, found chained in a house at Saraki, Adigbe area of Abeokuta, Ogun State. She was rescued on Thursday around 7.30 pm when neighbours living close to the building where she was chained alerted the police. She was rescued barely a week after the police and operatives of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps rescued a nine-year-old boy, Korede Taiwo, chained by his father,...

Nigeria Police Take Over #SaveMayowa Campaign Amidst Controversy

Despite the police announcing it had commenced investigations into the #SaveMayowa fundraising campaign, controversy has continued to trail the initiative which was aimed at raising overseas medical fees for Mayowa Ahmed, a cancer patient receiving treatment at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital. On Thursday, police officers broke up a heated exchange outside the hospital between the patient’s relatives and some social media campaigners who helped raise funds running into millions of naira for Ms. Ahmed’s treatment.

Latest Update: Police Freezes #SaveMayowa Funds Account

The controversial Save Mayowa Campaign has added a new twist after the Founder of Lifestake Foundation, Aramide Kasumu, who was involved in the fundraising, alleged that the family of the ailing Mayowa Ahmed lied that only N30m had been raised while the correct amount was N85m.   The campaign was initiated to raise funds for surgery in a foreign hospital for Mayowa, who is suffering from ovarian cancer, but there have been allegations that the patient’s family was using her condition...

Wow: See The “Luxury” Prison Cell Of Brazilian Drug Lord, Jarvis Pavao. [Pictures]

Paraguayan authorities got a surprise when they raided a Brazilian drug lord's jail cell... and found a three-room luxury suite complete with library, kitchen, conference room and plasma TV. Jarvis Chimenes Pavao, considered one of South America's most dangerous drug traffickers, had been serving an eight-year sentence for money laundering at the Tacumbu prison in the Paraguayan capital, Asuncion. But little...

Bomb Shell: Dogara Gave Appropriation Committee Members $20,000 Bribe Each To Lie At Press Conference – Jibrin

MY RESPONSE TO THE PRESS CONFERENCE ADDRESSED BY 9 MEMBERS OF THE 40-MEMBER APPROPRIATION COMMITTEE OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES   All the accusations they leveled against me are not in any way different from the bunch of lies contained in the shameless statement released by Speaker Dogara and the 3 other principal officers through Hon Namdas which I have fully provided response to. But to prove my innocence, I have resolved that I...

Budget Padding: EFCC, ICPC Must Investigate Allegations Against Dogara, Others – Jibrin

Former chairman of the House of Representative Committee on Appropriation, Honourable Jibrin on Friday insisted that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) must probe the allegation of budget padding he levelled against the Speaker, Honourable Yakubu Dogara and three other principal officers.   He said that, “This is a defining moment for the House of Representatives. It will never be business as usual”.   To this end, he urged members “to join...

You Can Now Work Only 3 Days A Week, Rochas Okorocha Declares To Imo Workers

Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State has said that civil servants in the state are to work for only three days a week while the remaining two days will be  for other pursuits  to sustain their families.   Okorocha made the declaration on Friday while addressing newsmen at his residence in Owerri.   According to him, those that will not be involved in the  arrangement are hospital workers, teachers, fire service personnel and other essential workers.   He pointed out that after...

Our Citizens Aren’t Having Enough Sex – Swedish Government.

Swedish people might not be getting laid enough – and the government is worried.   In an attempt to tackle the issue, the country’s government will ask its people about their bedroom habits in Sweden’s first major sex study in 20 years.   Reports in Swedish media have suggested a decline in sexual activity, sparking the major survey on all things sex. The nation’s loss of libido could be a ‘political problem’ if it is linked to stress and other health issues, according to Public...

Budget Padding: “Audit Constituency Projects Allocations” – Pro-Democracy Group

A pro-democracy body, the Civil Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC), has called for an independent audit of all previous constituency project allocations to members of the National Assembly (NASS) to determine to make sure spending practices are held accountable to the Nigerian people. The statement was made in a press released signed by Auwal Musa Ibrahim, CISLAC’s Executive Director.   According to the statement, the recent revelations by the former Chairman of the Appropriations Committee for the House of Representatives, Abdulmumin...

APC Wins Imo North Senate District, 2 State Constituencies In Re-Run Election

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has declared Mr Ben Uwajumogu of the All Progressive Congress (APC) winner of Imo North Senatorial District rerun election held on July 28.   Uwajumogu scored 56,076 votes to defeat Mr Athan Achonu of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) who scored 43, 815 votes.   Prof. Arinze Agbogu, the INEC Returning Officer for Imo North Senatorial District, who announced the result in the early hours of Friday, said the outcome was a summation of scores of July...

#AMACThugs : How Thugs Extort Businesses in Abuja in The Name of Government – Japheth J. Omojuwa

If you are a resident of Abuja or a regular visitor, you’d have noticed this often fierce looking young men wearing bibs stand on select road points in Abuja disturbing motorists. They are often dressed in their mufti with a bib over that or dressed in green for those who chase after Abuja taxi drivers. The most notorious of this lot are the ones that go to offices looking to extort and obtain money from the business...

Japheth J. Omojuwa: How AMAC Thugs – Abuja Municipal Area Council – Make life Difficult for Businesses in Abuja – Investigation

If you are a resident of Abuja or a regular visitor, you’d have noticed this often fierce looking young men wearing bibs stand on select road points in Abuja disturbing motorists. They are often dressed in their mufti with a bib over that or dressed in green for those who chase after Abuja taxi drivers. The most notorious of this lot are the ones that go to offices looking to extort and obtain money from the business...