Ghana's incumbent president John Dramani Mahama of the governing National Democratic Congress (NDC) has been declared the winner of the nation's presidential election, although results are being contested by the opposition.
Mahami secured 50.7 per cent of votes while his main opponent Nana Akufo-Addo of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) received 47.74 of the vote, according to Ghana’s Independent Electoral Commission (INEC).
The party of Akufo-Addo, who lost the 2008 presidential election by one percentage point, claims the result was rigged by the NDC and electoral commission staff. The NPP says that it has "enough concrete evidence" to prove that Akufo-Addo was the winner.
However the election on 7 December was declared free and fair by international observers including the region's Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS). Voter turn out was high too – about 80 per cent – although the new finger-printing system was marred by technical faults leading to voting continuing into 8 December in some parts of Ghana.
In the aftermath of the election the Accra offices of the electoral commission were heavily-guarded, and the announcement of the result led to some clashes between opposition supporters and police on 9 December. Otherwise the election was largely peaceful and Ghana retained its reputation as a beacon of democracy in a region not noted for smooth elections.
The newly-elected Mahama, who succeeded John Atta Mills after his death in July, called on "all leaders of all political parties to respect the voice of the people".
Mahama has pledged to improve economic growth, energy supplies and access to education over his four-year presidency.