Is the APC coming to Ghana? Here’s an update on presidential elections in Ghana and the C.A.R.

Looking ahead to the Central African Republic presidential run-off elections set to hold on the 31st of January, yesterday, the country’s constitutional court made some key rulings. While upholding the results of the first round of presidential elections, the court nullified the results of the legislative elections due to “numerous irregularities.” These rulings come two weeks after five of the presidential candidates, led by former minister, Martin Zinguele, stated that the nation’s electoral body breached its electoral laws. He and his fellow grousers complained that the electoral body released results that were not consistent with each other. But yesterday, the case was thrown out by the court for a lack of evidence.

The country’s legislative election, which ran concurrently with the first round of the presidential elections, is now set to hold on a new date to be set by the country’s electoral body. But this ruling generated a bit of controversy, as it appears that no one had an issue with the legislative elections in the first place. Presidential candidates were also puzzled by the ruling; with one of them, Karim Meckassoua, through his communications officer, calling it “illogical.” “Why would the results for the presidential vote be more credible than those of the legislative vote?” he asked.

New “Nigerian party” in Ghana elections?

In a move that seems habitual in African countries, a disgruntled candidate has broken away from his party and gone ahead to form his own, this time in Ghana. Hassan Ayariga, a former presidential candidate of the People’s National Convention (PNC) announced he will be contesting the 2016 presidential elections in his own party, the All People’s Congress (APC) after he felt cheated by the PNC. The PNC’s presidential candidate, Edward Mahama, defeated Ayariga at the primaries, paving the way for Mahama’s comeback into politics after many years.

Along with the similarity in abbreviation, the new party, APC, also shares the same symbol – a broom – with the ruling party in the neighbouring country of Nigeria, All Progressives Congress. Analysts say perhaps, like the formation of the APC before the 2015 general elections in Nigeria, Ayariga’s new party was formed to “sweep” away the ruling party, National Democratic Congress (NDC), led by current president John Mahama, who is contesting for a second term in office.

Hassan Ayariga, APC Ghana
Hassan Ayariga, APC Ghana     Credit:

However, there are rumours that Ayariga’s new party is being sponsored by the ruling party to weaken and confuse the strongest opposition, the PNC. Whatever the case, the verdict will determine whether John Mahama will continue to govern a failing economy, after the November presidential elections, or if he will make way for one of the candidates from the 25 other parties.

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