Sunday, October 19, 2014 9:21 am
Ghana’s main opposition party has nominated former foreign minister Nana Akufo-Addo as its candidate for president in 2016, giving him his third shot at the west African country’s top job.
Akufo-Addo, who lost narrowly to incumbent President John Dramani Mahama in 2012, on Saturday won 94.4 percent of the votes of delegates of the New Patriotic Party, said Frederick Tetteh, Ghana’s director of elections.
Tetteh announced Akufo-Addo’s nomination to a cheering crowd and blaring music in a park in the centre of the capital Accra.
Former trade minister Alan Kyerematen and parliamentarian Francis Addai-Nimoh shared the remainder of the delegates’ votes.
After losing to Mahama of the National Democratic Congress by 47.7 to 50.7 percent in 2012, Akufo-Addo challenged the results, but the Supreme Court upheld them.
He also ran unsuccessfully in 2008 against Mahama’s predecessor John Atta Mills, who died in office in 2012.
Mahama had been his vice president, and assumed the presidency after his death.
Mahama has presided over a worsening economy since his inauguration in January 2013, with a stubborn budget deficit, dropping gold prices and lower-than-expected oil production dragging down what was once one of the continent’s fastest growing markets.
The government has said it will seek assistance from the International Monetary Fund.