- Nana Akufo-Addo Wins Ghana Presidential Election
Challenger Nana Akufo-Addo won Ghana’s national election on Friday, tapping into an electorate fed up with a sputtering economy and ready for change.
The erudite 72-year-old human rights lawyer cruised to victory winning 53.8 percent of the votes, according to the country’s election agency.
“I will not let you down. I will do all in my power to live up to your hopes and expectations,” Akufo-Addo said to an ecstatic crowd at his house in the country’s capital of Accra.
“I will do my best to serve your interests and put our country back on the path of progress and prosperity.”
Incumbent John Mahama conceded defeat in the evening two days after a hotly contested race that was seen as a test of the country’s democracy in a region plagued by dictators and coups.
Mahama called to congratulate opposition leader Akufo-Addo, whose New Patriotic Party (NPP) supporters had been gathering for hours outside his house after local media gave him a clear lead following the Wednesday vote.
“Yes he has conceded defeat,” George Lawson of Mahama’s New Democratic Congress (NDC) party told AFP.
Akufo-Addo had campaigned on a platform promising to boost growth and deliver jobs.
“The president of Ghana is president for every single Ghanaian,” Akufo-Addo said, as fireworks popped overhead and thousands of people cheered in the streets outside his house.
– ‘Gold standard’ –
Akufo-Addo’s supporters — almost all in head-to-toe white, a symbol of victory — had been dancing on his lawn for hours in anticipation of his victory speech.
At one point, they broke out in an enthusiastic a cappella rendition of Ghana’s national anthem.
“We have won,” said Hajia Mustafa, a 44-year-old trader, flashing a wide smile, “I have my president, I have my choice.”
The high-stakes race between Akufo-Addo and Mahama has been seen as a litmus test of the stability for one of Africa’s most secure democracies.
But fears of widespread violence erupting during the election never materialised, with a generally peaceful voting day followed by calm as the official results trickled in.
“I think Ghanaians should be extraordinarily proud of themselves,” said Ambassador Johnnie Carson of the National Democratic Institute, an election observer.
“Ghana has distinguished itself in the last two and a half decades with integrity and transparency,” Carson said.
“It is a gold standard for democracy in Africa.”
– ‘Escaped violence’ –
Yet while the European Union Election Observation Mission said that Ghana “largely escaped the violence many had feared” it pointed to other areas of concern.
“The misuse of incumbency, including unequal access to state media, and unaccountable campaign financing were areas Ghana could address in the future,” said the mission in a statement.
Akufo-Addo will serve a four-year term in the former British colony, a once booming country that has seen its economy slow, currency deteriorate and inflation soar.
Mahama, who came to power in 2012 after beating Akufo-Addo, had urged voters to “stay the course”, promising to deliver more infrastructure projects.
In his third bid for the top job, Akufo-Addo blasted Ghana’s poor economic growth rate — estimated at 3.3 percent in 2016, the lowest rate for two decades — and laid out a radical vision to transform the country’s economy.
Akufo-Addo had also warned his supporters that “vigilance is key” at the polls in an attempt to avoid a repeat of the 2012 vote — narrowly won by Mahama with 50.7 percent — that he contested unsuccessfully in the country’s Supreme Court.
Ghana is the world’s second biggest producer of cocoa after Ivory Coast and Africa’s second biggest gold producer after South Africa.
But it was forced to turn to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in 2015 for a bailout as global commodity prices tanked.
University Of Ibadan (UI) Goes Digital, Releases Timetable for Virtual Academic Session
University of Ibadan (UI) on Friday announced it is going ahead with resumption on February 20 despite the second wave of COVID-19.
In a statement released by the school, the First Semester of the 2020/2021 academic session will commence virtually on February 20, 2021.
The virtual academic session will last for 13 straight weeks and end on Friday May 12, 2021, while the matriculation ceremony will hold on Tuesday March 16, 2021.
The University of Ibadan also scheduled one week for the Finalization of Continuous Assessment, to begin from Mon. 17 May and ends Friday 21 May.
The rising number of COVID-19 cases has compelled the Senate to approve the virtual academic session in an effort to ensure the tertiary institution abides by the protocols established by the Federal Government to curb the spread of the pandemic.
“It, therefore, agreed that the 2020/2021 First Semester lectures will be delivered online. In this regard, students will not be accommodated on campus,” a statement from the school said.
“Senate also approved the cancellation of the 2019/2020 session. The next session is, therefore, renamed 2020/2021 Academic Session. Consequently, students who have been admitted for the 2019/2020 session will now be regarded as the 2020/2021 intakes.
“Kindly note that online opening of Registration Portal and Orientation Programme for the 2020/2021 intakes may commence ahead of the Sat 20/02/21 date indicated above,” the statement said.
House of Representatives Impeached Trump Over Capitol Invasion
The United States House of Representatives on Wednesday impeached President Trump for the second time after instigating the US Capitol invasion.
Led by Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, 232 representatives, including 10 Republicans, voted to impeach the outgoing president against 197 that voted for him to remain in the office for the next six days when he would handover to the president-elect, Joe Biden.
The ten Republicans were Representatives Liz Cheney of Wyoming, the party’s No. 3 leader in the House; Jaime Herrera Beutler of Washington; John Katko of New York; Adam Kinzinger of Illinois; Fred Upton of Michigan; Dan Newhouse of Washington; Peter Meijer of Michigan; Anthony Gonzalez of Ohio; David Valadao of California; and Tom Rice of South Carolina.
Speaking before the vote, Pelosi said “a constitutional remedy that will ensure that the Republic will be safe from this man who is so resolutely determined to tear down the things that we hold dear and that hold us together.”
“He must go. He is a clear and present danger to the nation that we all love,” she said, adding later, “It gives me no pleasure to say this — it breaks my heart.”
Republicans, who unanimously stood behind president Trump in 2019 during his first impeachment, were divided this time over the attack on Capitol.
A Republican representative from California, Kevin McCarthy, said “The president bears responsibility for Wednesday’s attack on Congress by mob rioters,” Mr. McCarthy said. “He should have immediately denounced the mob when he saw what was unfolding.”
US Congress Declares Joe Biden as The 46th President of The United States After Trump Mob Left
The joint congress of the United States on Thursday, January 7, 2021 certified Joe Biden as the 46th President of the United States following President Trump’s mob action that disrupted the congress joint proceeding on Wednesday.
After ordering his followers to disrupt proceedings on Wednesday, President Trump later announced that there will be an orderly transition on January 20.
“Even though I totally disagree with the outcome of the election, and the facts bear me out, nevertheless there will be an orderly transition on January 20th,” Trump said in a statement issued by White House Deputy Chief of Staff Dan Scavino.
“I have always said we would continue our fight to ensure that only legal votes were counted. While this represents the end of the greatest first term in presidential history, it’s only the beginning of our fight to Make America Great Again!” Trump added.
While the certification was just a mere formality as Biden had secured enough electoral college votes (270) required to clinch the world’s most powerful seat, the refusal of Donald Trump to accept the results of the November 2020 election made the session a keenly watched, especially after Trump mob disrupted a joint session of the Senate.
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