Ghana Mourns Death of President as Successor Sworn In

Posted July 25th, 2012 at 10:15 am (UTC-5)
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People across Ghana are mourning the sudden death of president John Atta Mills, as the country's vice president was sworn-in to serve out the remainder of his term.

Vice President John Dramani Mahama took the oath of office Tuesday evening hours after officials announced the death of Mr. Mills.

No public announcement has been made about the cause of death, or when a funeral will be held.

The smooth transition of power underscores Ghana's role as one of the continent's most stable democracies. It is also a large-scale oil producer, has vast gold mines and is the world's second largest cocoa exporter.

The 68-year-old Atta Mills was elected in a 2008 vote and was expected to run in December's presidential election.

The main opposition New Patriotic Party has suspended its campaign to honor Mr. Mills and to help unite the nation.

Political analyst Emmanuel Akwetey, executive director of the Institute for Democratic Governance, told VOA that he expects the ruling National Democratic Congress Party to name Mr. Mahama as its candidate. He noted that Mr. Mahama campaigned with the late president and that the time remaining before the vote is short.