Claim: A member of the New Patriotic Party’s (NPP) Communication Team, Nana Akomea, has claimed that former President John Mahama’s defeat in the 2016 elections was the largest in Ghana and Africa.
Verdict: False. Nigeria’s Fmr. President Goodluck Jonathan lost to Fmr. President Mohammed Buhari with over 2.89 million votes. This is far more than Mr Mahama’s one million loss in 2016.
A member of the New Patriotic Party’s (NPP) Communication Team, Nana Akomea, has claimed that former President John Mahama’s defeat in the 2016 elections was the largest in Ghana and Africa.
Speaking on why Mr Mahama won’t win the 2024 elections, Mr Akomea said,
“Former President John Mahama was president for four and a half years. He was voted out in 2016 because Ghanaians were unsatisfied with his leadership. His defeat in 2016 was the largest defeat of any sitting president in Ghana and Africa, with over one million votes. For a sitting president to be ousted from office with over one million votes has never happened in Ghana.”
The Managing Director of Intercity STC Coaches claimed on Peace FM. The claim can be found from the 00:54- 2:11 of a show which has been published on its YouTube channel on May 16, 2023. It has garnered over 2,000 views.
There are two claims to look into. The first is whether John Mahama’s defeat in 2016 was the largest defeat of any sitting president in Ghana and Africa and whether a sitting president has never been ousted with over one million votes in Ghana.
The only way to ascertain whether Former President Mahama’s defeat was the largest defeat in Ghana and Africa is to look at the vote difference between the party that won a general election and the one that placed second in Ghana and Africa.
However, it is necessary to state that, Former President Mahama is the only president to lose an election as a sitting President in the history of the fourth republic of Ghana. Given this, it is obvious that he is the only president to lose by one million votes in Ghana in the 2016 election.
This can be sighted in Joy News’s coverage of the declaration of the winner of the presidential elections by the Former Chairperson of the Electoral Commission, Charlotte Osei, on December 9, 2016. Mr Mahama garnered 4.713,277 in the elections, while Mr Akufo-Addo garnered 5,716,026. The difference here is more than one million.
Has any sitting African president been voted out with over one million votes?
In Nigeria, former president Muhammadu Buhari defeated incumbent Goodluck Jonathan in Nigeria’s presidential elections by 2.57 million votes in the 2015 general elections.
Mr Jonathan was sworn in for his first presidential term in 2011. This is after he took over the presidency in May 2010 following the death of his predecessor, Umaru Yar’Adua.
However, in the 2015 elections, Mr Buhari polled 15,424,921 votes. On the other hand, the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, President Goodluck Jonathan, polled 12,853,162 votes. This is more than the one million votes Mr Mahama lost to President Akufo Addo in the 2016 elections. In this election, Goodluck Jonathan was defeated with 2.57 million votes.
This is evident in a declaration by Nigeria’s Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) captured by Channels Television on April 1, 2015. These figures have also been confirmed by Reuters and the leading Nigerian news website Premium Times.
The claim that John Mahama’s defeat in the 2016 elections is the largest in Africa is false.