Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo is a Ghanaian politician, lawyer and diplomat. He was one of the founding members of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) in 1992. During President John Kufuor’s two terms in office, Akufo-Addo served as Attorney General and Minister of Justice (2000-2003) and Minister for Foreign Affairs(2003-2007). In 2007, Akufo-Addo was elected to represent the NPP as their 2008 presidential candidate.
John Evans Atta Mills is the current President of Ghana. President Atta Mills earned a Ph.D. in Law from the School of Oriental and African Studies at the University of London — writing his final thesis on taxation and economic development. He spent almost 25 years teaching at various universities. Then in 1997, he became Vice President under President Jerry Rawlings. He campaigned unsuccessfully in the 2000 and 2004 presidential elections as the candidate of the National Democratic Congress(NDC). In 2008, he defeated the ruling party (NPP) candidateNana Akufo-Addo.
John Kofi Agyekum Kufuor served as the second President of the Fourth Republic of Ghana (2001–2009) and Chairperson of the African Union (2007–2008). The victory of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), with Kufuor as their candidate, at the end of Jerry Rawlings’ second term marked the first peaceful democratic transition of power in Ghana since the country’s independence in 1957. As a liberal-democrat, President Kufuor promoted the Five Priority Areas Progamme, a socio-economic vision that pursued: good governance, agricultural modernization, private sector participation, enhanced social services and infrastructural development. During his term, Ghana obtained a $500 million grant from the U.S. Millennium Challenge Account for economic development.
Jerry John Rawlings is a former military commander who ruled Ghana for almost 19 years. In 1981 he led a military coup and installed himself as head of the Provisional National Defence Council (PNDC), which ran a government of participatory democracy. In the early 1990s pressure from groups both inside and outside Ghana forced the PNDC to adopt constitutional rule. Rawlings retired from the Armed Forces and set up the National Democratic Congress (NDC). As the NDC candidate, he won two consecutive elections, and served as the first President of the Fourth Republic from 1992-2000. After two terms in office, Rawlings was barred by the constitution from standing in another election. The NDC lost the two subsequent elections to the main opposition party, the New Patriotic Party (NPP). President Rawlings was the joint recipient of the 1993 World Hunger Award.