28 Dec 2008

Ghana poised for run-off election

2:13 pm on 28 December 2008

Voters in Ghana go to the polls on Sunday for a presidential run-off after an earlier election on 7 December did not produce an outright winner.

Nana Akufo-Addo of the governing party is facing John Atta Mills of the opposition in a battle to succeed President John Kufuor.

Mr Addo defeated his rival by a slender margin in the first round but not by enough to avoid a run-off.

The BBC reports the stakes are high as Ghana has just found commercial quantities of oil.

Ghana has held successful elections before and has witnessed a peaceful transfer of power from one leader to another.

President Kufuor, who has to stand down having served two consecutive terms, called for a peaceful vote.

However, the rival sides accused each other on the eve of polls of seeking to rig the ballot through intimidation and fraud.

Ghana is traditionally an exporter of cocoa and gold, but is preparing to start producing oil in commercial quantities from late 2010.