Prof. Atta Mills could become Ghana’s new president

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Prof. John Evans Atta Mills, candidate of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), has taken the lead in Sunday’s presidential runoff election in Ghana.

Mills has 50.47 per cent of the votes from 226 of the 230 constituencies, while Nana Akufo-Addo, the candidate of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP), has 49.53 per cent.

Throughout the night, the pendulum swung from one candidate to the other, but it is Mills that gained more votes, even when he lost in a constituency.

The NDC accused the NPP of manipulating the results in the Ashanti and Eastern Regions, saying it had “more than compelling evidence” that all was not well with the election process, especially in the two regions.

NDC’s campaign coordinator, Alex Segbefia, said that the party had reports of “widespread intimidation, harassment, assaults and arrests of polling agents and NDC functionaries are rife and commonplace in the Ashanti Region”.

“The current position and state of affairs in Ashanti Region and parts of Eastern Region will make it difficult for figures from these Regions to be accepted by the NDC, especially since in many polling stations, our polling agents were not permitted by the electoral and security officers to participate in the vetting of voters for purposes of authentication, and many polling stations are no longer being manned by the NDC polling agents due to harassments, intimidation and assaults from NPP supporters and, in some instances, security personnel,” he alleged.

The NPP also accused the NDC of intimidating its polling agents in the Volta Region, the stronghold of the opposition party, alleging that they were prevented from working.

In the first round 7 December, Akufo-Addo had 4,159,439 votes representing 49.13 per cent, while Prof. Atta Mills obtained 4,056,634 representing 47.92 per cent.

The winner of Sunday’s run-off will replace President John Agyekum Kufuor, who ends his second term next month and is not eligible to contest for re-election.

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