Thursday, 11 December 2008

Electioneering – Radiohead (1997)

Listening to the BBC News Service on National Public Radio while driving into work early each morning takes me to news stories I would not follow otherwise.

These days I am hooked on on-the-ground reporting of Ghana's presidential election which was held along with that for the parliamentary on December 7th. It was the first general election in 16 years, had a staggering turnout of 70% (12.5 million Ghanaians) and all in all, was peaceful. Yesterday, the nation's Electoral Commission announced that the presidential polls will go into a run-off on December 28th between Nana Akuffo-Addo of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and John Atta Mills of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) as neither man received more than 50%. They were at 49% and 48% respectively. There were actually six other candidates on the ballot.

So why is Accra on my mind?

In 2010, Ghana is likely to start exporting oil after discoveries were made off the country's coast last year by London-based Tullow Oil Plc and Dallas, Texas-based Kosmos Energy LLC.

Managing the revenue from crude production will be among the incoming president's main challenges, according to Robert Darko Osei, a research fellow at the University of Ghana's Institute of Statistical, Social and Economic Research, as reported on "We need to be forward-looking in terms of what the oil industry needs" by implementing infrastructure-development projects such as road building, Osei said.

I am in talks with the Centre for Logistics and Supply-Chain Excellence whose vision is to bring Ghana into the 21st century via global best practices in mining, oil and gas and logistics. They are bullish on their future and are reaching out to education entities like The Oxford Princeton Programme to be part of the transformation.

While there are discussions to be had and details to hash out, and furthermore, I would need to consider any Ghana-specific effort within the context of our African continent ones, it is truly a time of high-anticipation and trepidation for a country whose fortunes just might turnaround with its forthcoming status as an oil-exporting nation.

Jobert E. Abueva
Global Marketing Director

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