EIU forecasts Akufo-Addo victory

On Monday, December 7, 2020, Ghanaians will go to the polls to elect a President and 275 parliamentarians, in what will be the eighth time under the Fourth Republic.

While there are a dozen presidential aspirants on the ballot, the race is largely seen as between the leaders of the two main political parties, incumbent Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and ex-President John Dramani Mahama of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC).

According to the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) in its latest Country Report, President Akufo-Addo is favourite to win a second term in office, having managed the economy better than his main rival Mr. Mahama, who was in power from 2012 to 2017.

“The upcoming elections are set to be competitive as it is the first time in Ghana’s history that a sitting president, Nana AkufoAddo of the NPP, will run against a former president, John Mahama of the NDC. This unique situation creates a platform for both presidential and parliamentary candidates from across the political divide to engage in debates over records in office.

“The polls will be closely contested, but the NPP can still portray itself as the better custodian of Ghana’s economy (despite the impact of the pandemic), as the NDC’s line of attack that the NPP has mismanaged the economy will be blunted by its own economic record while in power. We, therefore, expect Mr. Akufo-Addo and the NPP to secure reelection,” the EIU said.

Despite predicting a 1.3 percent contraction of Ghana’s economy this year owing to the pandemic, the EIU makes the point that the strength of Akufo-Addo lies in the management of the economy, which saw a turnaround from the one he inherited from former President Mahama.

Commenting on some of the possible factors that could throw a spanner in the works of the Akufo-Addo reelection bid, the London-based firm mentioned the resignation of Martin Amidu as Special Prosecutor.

“Our forecast that the incumbent NPP will win the upcoming election remains unchanged, but we highlight that the ongoing case focusing on potential political interference in anti-corruption investigations risks reducing the NPP’s core message, namely, that the party is serious about tackling corruption and is a better custodian of Ghana’s economy than the opposition NDC,” the EIU said.

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