News

Ghana's Ruling-Party Boycotting Friday Vote

Ghana's ruling party wants to stop Friday's voting in a single constituency that could decide the nation's next president. Ghana's opposition candidate is holding a slight lead over his ruling-party rival.

Ghana's ruling National Patriotic Party says it will not take part in Friday's vote in the Tain constituency because its supporters there are being intimidated.

The party is seeking a court order to have the vote postponed. Party spokesman Arthur Kennedy says the security situation in the western district is not conducive to a free and fair election. If officials go ahead with the poll, he says the ruling party will boycott the vote.

A shortage of ballot papers during last Sunday's run-off forced the scheduled revoting in Tain because Ghana's Electoral Commission said it could not name a winner without those results.

With nearly nine million ballots cast, just over 23,000 votes separate opposition candidate John Atta-Mills and ruling-party candidate Nana Akufo-Addo. So the 53,000 registered voters in Tain could well decide Ghana's next president.

With all but the Tain votes counted, opposition candidate Atta-Mills has 50.13 percent of the vote. The ruling party's Akufo-Addo has 49.87 percent. During the first round of presidential balloting December 7, Atta-Mills narrowly won the Tain constituency, edging out Akufo-Addo by fewer than 1,300 votes.

Overall, Akufo-Addo won that first round. But because no candidate received more than 50 percent of the votes cast, he and Atta-Mills went head-to-head in a second round that was to decide the winner.

Now the contest hangs on the results of revoting in Tain and the Electoral Commission's investigation of allegations of vote fraud by both the ruling party and the opposition National Democratic Congress. The electoral commission says its examination of alleged fraud in the Ashanti and Volta districts will be factored into the final outcome.

The commission has given no indication about when those investigations might be completed or when a winner might be announced.

The ruling party's Akufo-Addo is a 64-year-old former attorney general and foreign minister who campaigned on the strength of improvements in Ghana's economy, health care and infrastructure during the administration of President John Kufuor.

Opposition candidate Atta-Mills is a 64-year-old tax law professor who campaigned against the ruling party saying it is time for a change after what he calls eight years of miserable failure.

Whoever wins will govern with a decidedly different parliament, as the ruling party lost its legislative majority in the first round, dropping 21 seats to finish with 107 of the 228 seats in parliament. The opposition picked up 20 seats to finish with 114 seats.

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Making Music, Fleeing Bombs: New Film on Sudan’s Internal Refugeesi
X
Carolyn Weaver
July 06, 2015 6:47 PM
In 2012, Sudanese filmmaker Hajooj Kuka went to make a documentary among civil war refugees in Sudan’s Blue Nile and Nuba Mountains region. What he found surprised him: music was helping to save people from bombing raids by their own government. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more.
Video

Video Making Music, Fleeing Bombs: New Film on Sudan’s Internal Refugees

In 2012, Sudanese filmmaker Hajooj Kuka went to make a documentary among civil war refugees in Sudan’s Blue Nile and Nuba Mountains region. What he found surprised him: music was helping to save people from bombing raids by their own government. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more.
Video

Video Rice Farmers Frustrated As Drought Grips Thailand

A severe drought in Thailand is limiting the growing season of the country’s important rice crop. Farmers are blaming the government for not doing more to protect a key export. Steve Sandford reports from Chiang Mai, Thailand.
Video

Video 'From This Day Forward' Reveals Difficult Journey of Transgender Parent

In her documentary, "From This Day Forward", filmmaker Sharon Shattuck reveals the personal journey of her transgender father, as he told his family that he always felt he was a woman inside and decided to live as one. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Floodwaters Threaten Iconic American Home

The Farnsworth House in the Midwest State of Illinois is one of the most iconic homes in America. Thousands of tourists visit the site every year. Its location near a river inspired the design of the house, but, as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, that very location is now threatening the existence of this National Historic Landmark.
Video

Video Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountain

Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Xenophobia Victims in South Africa Flee Violence, Then Return

Many Malawians fled South Africa early this year after xenophobic attacks on African immigrants. But many quickly found life was no better at home and have returned to South Africa – often illegally and without jobs, and facing the tough task of having to start over. Lameck Masina and Anita Powell file from Johannesburg.
Video

Video Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prison

As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video UK Holds Terror Drill as MPs Mull Tunisia Response

After pledging a tough response to last Friday’s terror attack in Tunisia, which came just days before the 10th anniversary of the bomb attacks on London’s transport network, British security services are shifting their focus to overseas counter-terror operations. VOA's Henry Ridgwell has more.
Video

Video Obama on Cuba: This is What Change Looks Like

President Barack Obama says the United States will soon reopen its embassy in Cuba for the first time since 1961, ending a half-century of isolation. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.

VOA Blogs