John Dramani Mahama (born 29 November 1958) is the President of the Republic of Ghana. He is a communication expert, historian, writer, former Member of Parliament and Minister of State, and former Vice-President of the Republic of Ghana. He succeeded to the Presidency following the death of John Atta Mills on 24 July 2012.
Early years and education
Mr. Mahama was born in Damango, which is in the Northern Region of Ghana. His father Mr. Emmanuel Adama Mahama was the first Member of Parliament for the West Gonja Constituency and the first Regional Commissioner of the Northern Region during Ghana's First Republic. Upon the successful completion of that programme, Mr. Mahama then went on to pursue an additional postgraduate diploma, this one in social psychology at the Institute of Social Sciences in Moscow.
After completing his education Mr. Mahama returned to Ghana and, from 1991 to 1996, he worked as the Information, Culture and Research Officer at the Embassy of Japan in Accra. From there he moved to the nongovernmental agency (NGO) PLAN International's Ghana Country Office, where he worked as International Relations, Sponsorship Communications and Grants Manager.
As Member of Parliament
An eloquent champion of the underprivileged, Mr. Mahama was first elected to the Parliament of Ghana in 1996 to represent the Bole/Bamboi Constituency for a four-year term. In April 1997, Mr. Mahama was appointed Deputy Minister of Communications. He rose to become the substantive Minister of Communications by November 1998; it was a position he held until January 2001 when the National Democratic Congress (NDC), which was the current ruling party, handed over power to the newly elected New Patriotic Party's government. In 2000, Mr. Mahama was re-elected for another four-year term as the Member of Parliament for the Bole/Bamboi Constituency. He was again re-elected in 2004 for a third term. From 2001 to 2004, Mr. Mahama served as the Minority Parliamentary Spokesman for Communications. In 2002, he was appointed the Director of Communications for the NDC. That same year, he served as a member of the team of international observers selected to monitor Zimbabwe's Parliamentary Elections.
During his tenure as Minister of Communications, Mr. Mahama also served as the Chairman of the National Communications Authority, in which capacity he played a key role in stabilizing Ghana's telecommunications sector after it was deregulated in 1997. Mr. Mahama also served as a member of the National Economic Management Team, a founding member of the Ghana AIDS Commission, a member of the implementation committee of the 2000 National Population Census, and a deputy chairman of the Publicity Committee for the re-introduction of the Value Added Tax (VAT). Continuing to expand his interest and involvement in international affairs, in 2003 Mr. Mahama became a member of the Pan-African Parliament, serving as the Chairperson of the West African Caucus. In 2005 he was, additionally, appointed the Minority Spokesman for Foreign Affairs. He served in these capacities until 2008, when he was handpicked to become the vice presidential candidate.
John Dramani Mahama upon acting as care-taker president of the republic of Ghana for 5 months contested on as flagbearer of the ruling National Democratic Congress and secured 50.70% of total votes cast in the December 7, 2012 general election to be declared winner by the electoral commission and sworn by the Chief Justice, Justice Mrs. Georgina Theodora Wood as the duly elected Leader of the Country.
Soon after his investiture, the opposition New Patriotic Party led by the 2012 Presidential candidate Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, running mate Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia and the party chairman Jacob Otanka Obetsebi-Lamptey, challenge the results of the elections in the famous election petition suit.
The petition was heard by nine Supreme Court Justices with Justice William Atuguba as President. After eight months of hearing, the Supreme on August 29th 2013 dismissed the petition by a 5-4 majority decision.
John Dramani Mahama becomes the fourth elected leader in the fourth republic, and Ghana’s first president whose election has been challenged in court and decided by same. He also becomes the Fourth "John" to govern the Nation and the first President of the Republic born after the Nation attained Independence.
Mr. Mahama has seven children. He is married to Mrs. Lordina Mahama. Despite his often busy schedule, Mr. Mahama makes it a point to devote time to his family, his faith and his hobbies. He is a Christian who believes in the importance of respect for and tolerance of, other faiths and forms of worship in a nation as diverse and peaceful as Ghana. He has a keen interest in environmental affairs, particularly the problem of plastic pollution in Africa, which he has committed himself to addressing during his tenure as Vice President. Books Mr. Mahama loves to read. He is also an avid writer and has had numerous articles published nationally and internationally. His first book, My First Coup d'État and Other True Stories From the Lost Decades of Africa, was published by Bloomsbury on July 3, 2012.
1988: Institute of Social Sciences, Moscow (Postgraduate Studies in Social Psychology) 1991: Worked as: Information officer, Japan Embassy in Republic of Ghana 1995: Sponsorship and Grants Manager, Plan International, Ghana Country Office 1996: Elected, 1st term Member of Parliament for Bole/Bamboi Constituency 1997: Deputy Minister of Communications 1998: Minister of Communications 1998: Acted as Chairman of the National Communications Authority, Regulatory Agency for Telecommunications and ICT sector 2000: Elected, 2nd term Member of Parliament for Bole/Bamboi Constituency 2004: Elected, 3rd term Member of Parliament for Bole/Bamboi Constituency 2001: Minority Spokesman for Communications 2005: Minority Spokesman for Foreign Affairs 1997: Member, Appointments Committee of Parliament 1997: Member, Communications Committee of Parliament 1997: Member, Standing Orders Committee of Parliament 2002: Director of Communications NDC 2002: Member, Election observer and monitoring team, Zimbabwe Presidential elections 2004: Member of the Pan-African Parliament Chairman of West African Caucus, Pan-African Parliament Member, Transport, Industry, Energy, Communications, Science and Technology Committee, Pan-African Parliament. Member, European and Pan-African Parliament Ad-hoc Committee on Co-operation.
Articles Written By H.E. Mahama
What Would Fela Think? | The Root | June 2011 Bridge Between Ghana and Black America | The Root | March 2011 Wired For Freedom in Africa | The Root | February 2011 The Politics of Peace | The Huffington Post | January 2011 There's Still Hope for Democracy in Africa | The Root| - December 2010 Seeing Africa With Different Eyes - June 2010