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Vol 37 No 22

Published 1st November 1996


Ghana

Close call

In the first real election campaign since 1979, tempers are beginning to fray

The smart money is on a close result in the legislative and presidential elections due on 7 December. President Jerry Rawlings is far more popular than his ruling National Democratic Congress; the opposition 'Great Alliance' has been running only since August and is short of money. Yet Rawlings may not be able to carry his party to a decisive win in the simultaneous elections for the National Assembly. An opposition-dominated legislature could methodically obstruct the president - and many Ghanaians fear that if that happened, violence could follow. After 7 December, Ghanaians will at least have one of the strongest parliamentary oppositions on the continent. The Great Alliance of the New Patriotic Party (Danquah-Busiaist) and Peoples' Convention Party (Nkrumahist) should win 70 to 80 of the 200 Assembly seats.

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