New Patriotic Party (NPP) Presidential Candidate, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, 72, has been declared Ghana’s 5th President of the Fourth Republic after an impressive performance in the 2016 presidential poll.
The three-time lucky NPP leader polled 5,716,026 to beat incumbent President John Mahama who had 4,713, 277 Electoral Commission Chairperson, Charlotte Osei announced Friday evening.
The declaration is also a confirmation of Joy News' projection which predicted a win for Nana Akufo-Addo with a margin of 53.35 percent.
According to EC statistics, Nana Akufo-Addo recorded 53.85% of the total votes cast as against 44.40 by President Mahama.
The declaration of Nana Akufo-Addo as winner of the election brings to an end the era of the 'John' presidency which saw John Rawlings, John Kufuor, John Mills and John Mahama all taking their turn as president from 1992 to 2016.
A new dawn has arrived. Nana Akufo-Addo is president elect after several attempts. His first was in 1998 but could not win the party's primaries because John Kufuor another stalwart in the party won the primary and the presidency for two terms.
In 2008 Nana Akufo-Addo contested the presidential primaries with 16 other members of his party. He prevailed as flagbearer but failed to win the presidency even though he came very close.
He won the first round election but failed to make the 50 percent plus one required for him to be crowned president.
In the second round, his closest contender John Mills won the election. After four years, John Mahama became the leader of the NDC after the demise of president John Mills.
He contested the 2012 elections and beat Nana Akufo-Addo who again had won the party's primaries.
In 2016, the battle lines were drawn. Nana Akufo-Addo at 72 won the party's primaries and was making a last gasp attempt at the presidency.
The president, 58, swore to retire his opponent and continue to deliver development project for the people of Ghana. He banked his hope on what he described as unprecedented infrastructure achievements.
Having solved a four year power debacle which plunged the country into darkness, the president was hopeful the country's energy sector and economy were on the path of recovery and pleaded with the citizens to retain him in office so he would continue with his projects.
Call for change
It was a call to change by the opposition leader, who described the president as the most "incompetent" in the history of Ghana, " and a threat to the future of the country.
Through the nooks and cranny of the country's geography Nana Akufo-Addo took his campaign of change to the over 15 million Ghanaian voters promising the youth with jobs and better education and a government free from corruption.
With his one village one dam, one district, one factory campaign slogan and many other policies, Nana Akufo-Addo put forward his policy options to the table and before the electorate.
But the president and his men were quick to rubbish the policy prescriptions of the opposition leader, describing some of the policies as wishful thinking, an easy ploy to win votes.
On Wednesday December 7 the two political leaders and five others went to the polls, praying to Ghanaian electorate to hand them power for the next four years.
The election was organised in a peaceful manner, with few hitches and global acclaim but the processes for collation and declaration of the results were long and tardy.
More than 24 hours after the polls, the Electoral Commission was yet to announce a single certified results from any of the 275 constituencies across the country but its chair publicized a number of challenges which prevented her from doing so.
However, parliamentary results announced at the various collation centres across the country showed that the NPP had swept an overwhelming majority of seats in swing regions- Central, Western, Brong Ahafo and Greater Accra.
In the absence of the presidential results by the EC, there was a mountain of suspicion, a battle of press conferences and a call for peace.
The opposition New Patriotic Party announced it had won the election with 80 per cent of the polling station results collated and called on the president to concede but the NDC rebuffed the claim, insisting president John Mahama was in a commanding lead.
The Peace Council urged the EC to expedite action in releasing results of the election and also called on the political parties to desist from declaring itself winners of the election
Having collated results from 207 constituencies, Joy FM, at 2:00am Friday, projected that the NPP leader was going to be the president of Ghana.
Friday morning, the EC chair Charlotte Osei said she had received only 219 constituency results but was still not ready to declare the results. The suspicion heightened further and press conferences were still on.
All through the day, all eyes were on the Electoral Commission to declare but they held on.
There were calls from well meaning people to the president to concede defeat. Former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan in a statement on his facebook page implored losers of the election to concede and applauded the five other presidential aspirants for conceding.
But the Deputy Power Minister John Jinapor Friday evening said the NDC still had the chance of winning the election and it may well be that Nana Addo may well be the one calling the president to concede.
Few minutes after Jinapor's statement however came a concession. It was from the president, to the president-elect Nana Akufo-Addo.
An hour later came the declaration. Mrs Charlotted Osei announced Nana Akufo-Addo president elect having secured more than half of the total votes cast.
Five other candidates who contested the elections failed to garner more than two percent of the votes.
Dr Papa Kwesi Nduom of the Progressive People's Party came third, with a total of 105,682 votes, the Convention People's Party Ivor Greenstreet polled 25,395, Nana Konadu Agyemang Rawlings of the NDP, 16,878, with Dr Edward Mahama and the Independent candidate Joseph Osei Yeboah also attained some votes.
Shortly after the declaration the president in his acceptance speech was humbled in victory but assured he will not let Ghanaians down.