John Kofi Agyekum Kufuor (born 8 December 1938) is a Ghanaian politician who served as the President of Ghana from 7 January 2001 to 7 January 2009. He was also Chairperson of the African Union from 2007 to 2008. His victory over John Evans Atta Mills after the end of Jerry Rawlings' second term marked the first peaceful democratic transition of power in Ghana since independence in 1957.
Kufuor's career has been spent on the liberal-democratic side of Ghanaian politics, in the parties descended from the United Gold Coast Convention and the United Party. He was a minister in Kofi Abrefa Busia's Progress Party government during Ghana's Second Republic, and a Popular Front Party opposition frontbencher during the Third Republic. In the Fourth Republic Kufuor stood as the New Patriotic Party's candidate at the 1996 election, and then led it to victory in 2000 and 2004. Having served two terms, in 2008 he was no longer eligible for the presidency.
|President of Ghana|
(2nd President of the 4th Republic)
7 January 2001 – 7 January 2009
|Vice President||Aliu Mahama|
|Preceded by||Jerry John Rawlings|
|Succeeded by||John Atta Mills|
|Chairperson of the African Union|
30 January 2007 – 31 January 2008
|Preceded by||Denis Sassou Nguesso|
|Succeeded by||Jakaya Kikwete|
|Member of Parliament for Atwima Nwabiagya |
24 September 1979 – 31 December 1981
|Member of Parliament for Atwima Nwabiagya |
1 October 1969 – 13 January 1972
|Born||8 December 1938|
Kumasi, Colony of the Gold Coast
|Political party||New Patriotic Party|
|Alma mater||Exeter College, Oxford (1961–64), |
Prempeh College (1954–58), Osei Tutu Boarding School (1951–53)
An Asante, Kufuor married Theresa Kufuor (née Mensah) in 1962; they have five children together. Kufuor and his family belong to the Roman Catholic Church, and is a Senior Grand Warden of the United Grand Lodge of England Freemasons. He was born in Kumasi and was educated at Osei Tutu Boarding school (Osei Tutu Senior High School) from 1951 to 1953, Prempeh College from 1954 to 1958, Lincoln's Inn, London (1959–61) and Exeter College, Oxford (1961–64). In the Second Republic's Parliamentary Register Kufuor lists as his hobbies and interests table tennis, reading, football, and film shows. He was once the Chairman of Kumasi Asante Kotoko Football Club.
As Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs he represented Ghana on a number of occasions. From 1969 to December 1971 he led Ghana's delegation to the United Nations General Assembly in New York City, the Organization of African Unity (OAU) Ministerial Meetings in Addis Ababa, and the Summit Conference of the Non-Aligned Movement in Lusaka. In 1970 he led the Ghanaian delegation to Moscow in the Soviet Union, Prague (Czechoslovakia), and Belgrade (Yugoslavia) to discuss Ghana's indebtedness to these countries.
As the Spokesman on Foreign Affairs and Deputy Opposition Leader of the Popular Front Party (PFP) Parliamentary Group during the Third Republic, he was invited to accompany President Limann to the OAU Summit Conference in Freetown, Sierra Leone. He was also a member of the parliamentary delegation that visited the United States in 1981 to talk to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank on Ghana's economic problems.
In January 1982 the leadership of the All People's Party (APP), which was an alliance of all the opposition parties, advised some leading members, including the Deputy Leader of the Alliance, Alhaji Iddrisu Mahama, the general secretary, Dr Obed Asamoah and Kufuor, to accept an invitation from the Provisional National Defence Council (PNDC) to serve in what was purported to be a National Government. Kufuor was appointed the Secretary for Local Government in this new government.
As a Secretary for Local Government, he wrote the Local Government Policy Guidelines that were to be the foundation of the current decentralised District Assemblies.
On 20 April 1996 Kufuor was nominated by 1034 out of 2000 delegates of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) drawn from all the 200 Constituencies of the Country to run for the President of Ghana on 10 December 1996. After campaigning for less than nine months, Kufuor polled 39.62% of the popular votes to Rawlings' 57% in the 1996 election. On 23 October 1998 he was re-nominated by the New Patriotic Party not only to run again for President but also to officially assume the position of Leader of the Party.
Kufuor won the presidential election of December 2000; in the first round, held on 7 December, Kufuor came in first place with 48.4%, while John Atta-Mills, Jerry Rawlings' Vice-President, came in second with 44.8%, forcing the two into a run-off vote. In the second round, held on 28 December, Kufuor was victorious, taking 56.9% of the vote. When Kufuor was sworn in on 7 January 2001, it marked the first time in Ghana's history that an incumbent government had peacefully surrendered power to the opposition.
Kufuor was re-elected in presidential and parliamentary elections held on 7 December 2004, earning 52.45% of the popular vote in the first round and thus avoiding a run-off, while at the same time Kufuor's party, the New Patriotic Party, was able to secure more seats in the Parliament of Ghana.
His administration's domestic policy in the first term was marked by fiscal and monetary stringency on the economic front, aimed at stabilising a national economy that had stagnated and was in decline. His social vision was focused on unleashing the entrepreneurial, creative and innovative potential of Ghanaians as a means of creating wealth and hence dealing with the social challenges facing them. This socio-economic vision was encapsulated in the Five Priority Areas Programme, viz., the pursuit of good governance, modernisation of agriculture for rural development, private sector participation, enhanced social services and vigorous infrastructure development. His administration is said to have received the most financial assistance of any in the history of Ghana, due essentially to donors' distrust for the military governments before it, as well as those with some military connections.
Kufuor's foreign policy was underpinned by what he termed "economic diplomacy". It is within this context that in Africa in general and in West Africa in particular, a good neighbour policy has been pursued, which saw Ghana under Kufuor brokering peace in Liberia, Sierra Leone, Ivory Coast and Guinea-Bissau, among other African states. On the global stage, Kufuor actively sought the establishment of a just and equitable international social and economic order, while promoting and safeguarding the interests of Ghana through bilateral and multilateral agreements. His stature as statesman, democrat and credible spokesman for Africa found expression in his invitation to major international meetings and conferences including the founding summit of the AU, G8 Summits in Sea Island, Georgia and Glenneagles, Scotland, and the World Economic Forum.
He served as Chairman of the regional grouping ECOWAS for two consecutive terms – 2003 and 2004. In 2007, due to the policy successes his administration chalked up, Kufuor had his mandate renewed in 2004 and was sworn into office on 7 January 2005. Policy direction in Kufuor's second presidential term built on the foundations laid in the first four years. The administration pursued Ghana's socio-economic transformation in the second term, using the three-pronged approach of private-sector development, human resource development and good governance. At the international level, Kufuor consolidated Ghana's position as the voice of Africa, credible peace broker, beacon of democracy (Ghana was the first country to undergo Peer Review under NEPAD's Africa Peer Review Mechanism) and responsible member of the comity of nations.
On 29 January 2007, Kufuor was elected as Chairperson of the African Union for the 2007–08 AU session. He was succeeded by Jakaya Kikwete of Tanzania on 31 January 2008. Kufuor was involved in a car accident during his presidency on 14 November 2007, in which another car collided with his, causing it to roll over several times. Kufuor was reported to be uninjured.
He started the National Health Insurance Scheme to replace the existent cash-and-carry system; 11 million Ghanaians were registered under this scheme. He set up the National Ambulance Service and built more than 205 hospitals and clinics. He also built a state-of-the-art emergency centre at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital. Kufuor also introduced free maternal health care in public hospitals for all expectant mothers.
Kufuor institutionalised the capitation grant for school children at the basic level, whereby each student was entitled to $2 for cultural sports and development. He also started the national school feeding programme. He changed the Senior Secondary School curriculum from three years to four years and renamed it Senior High School. He started the model school senior high school concept in which some deprived schools were upgraded to the level of some first-class senior high schools.
Kufuor launched the Microfinance and small loans program (MASLOC) – a US$50 million fund that makes micro loans available to the productive population – and introduced the Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty Program (LEAP), which provides direct cash transfers to poor households in the country who could not support themselves. For the first time in Ghana's history, borrowing became so cheap and available that microfinance companies (and major banks) actually went on to the streets to encourage small-scale businessmen and women to apply for loans.
He renovated the Accra Sports Stadium and the Baba Yara stadia as well as built the Essipong and Tamale stadia in 2008 to host the CAN 2008. Under Kufuor Ghana qualified for the World Cup in 2006.
Finally, President Kufuor's good governance policy has led to Ghana obtaining a record $500 million grant from the U.S Millennium Challenge Account for economic development. Social vision was anchored on unleashing the entrepreneurial, creative and innovative potential of Ghanaians as a means of creating wealth and hence dealing with the social challenges facing Ghanaians. This socio-economic vision was encapsulated in the Five Priority Areas Programme vis the pursuit of good governance, modernisation of agriculture for rural development, private sector participation, enhanced social services and vigorous infrastructural development. The George Walker Bush Highway was also built from this fund.
Kufuor has been honoured with numerous awards, including the Face-of-Good-Governance Award, Chatham House Prize, the Climate Change Award, and the World Food Program's Global Ambassador Against Hunger.
Kufuor has five children with his wife, Theresa Kufuor. An Akan, Kufuor speaks the Akan language fluently. He was known for using his language whenever he was campaigning in his native Ashanti Region. Kufuor lives in Accra, Ghana's capital. He has openly professed his membership as a Freemason since being a young lawyer.
In July 2009, Kufuor became a member of the SNV Netherlands Development Organisation International Advisory Board to contribute his expertise to the organisation's poverty reduction work. In September 2009, Kufuor spoke in the Netherlands at a Dutch government event to mark '60 years of development aid' at the invitation of Dutch Minister Bert Koenders, which was attended by nearly 2,000 people. During his visit to the Netherlands, he was interviewed by the newspaper NRC Handelsblad and the Internationale Samenwerking magazine. He argued for the importance of effective development assistance, pointing out that development aid helped Ghana enter the international capital market.
On 21 September 2009, he delivered the prestigious Legatum Pericles Lecture at the Legatum Center for Development and Entrepreneurship at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Kufuor is the Governing Council Chairman of Interpeace, an international peacebuilding organisation based in Geneva since October 2009. Also in 2009, he served on the High Level Commission on the Modernization of World Bank Group Governance, which – under the leadership of Ernesto Zedillo – conducted an external review of the World Bank Group's governance.
Kufuor was chosen together with Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva to jointly receive the 2011 World Food Prize for their personal commitment and visionary leadership while serving as the presidents of Ghana and of Brazil, respectively, in creating and implementing government policies to alleviate hunger and poverty in their countries. The foundation said the significant achievements of these two Laureates illustrate that transformational leadership truly can effect positive change and greatly improve people's lives.
On 20 September 2011, Kufuor inaugurated the John Agyekum Kufuor (JAK) Foundation with a ground-breaking ceremony for the JAK Centre for Leadership, Governance and Development at the University of Ghana, Legon. The inaugural lecture, which attracted very high local and foreign dignitaries, had H.E. Horst Köhler, former president of Germany, as its guest speaker. Thabo Mbeki, former president of South Africa, and Ghana ex-president Jerry John Rawlings, Kufuor's fiercest critic, were among the dignitaries who attended the ceremony. The ex-presidents also unveiled a plaque on 22 September 2011 for the Kufuor Presidential Library and Museum at Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), Kumasi, which formed part of the John A. Kufuor Foundation.
On 14 October 2011, President Kufuor received the 2011 World Food Prize, along with President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva for his personal commitment and visionary leadership while serving as the president of Ghana, and in creating and implementing government policies to alleviate hunger and poverty in his country.
Numerous NPP supporters tried to barricade President Kufuor's house on 7 January 2013 to prevent him from attending John Dramani Mahama's inauguration, which the NPP as a party had decided to boycott as they felt going would undermine their challenge to Mahama's win in court. Kufuor explained that the party had allowed him to go because he was invited as an ex-President of Ghana and not as a Member of the NPP to the chagrin of the supporters. The Ghana Police Service (GPS) reinforcement had to be sent to his abode to allow him to be able to go for the programme.
At the 62nd regular meeting which was held on 15 September 2017, the Council of the George Grant University of Mines and Technology ( UMaT) appointed Former President Kufour as the first Chancellor of the University, the appointment taking effect from 1 November 2017. The Investiture of former President Kufuor as Chancellor was held on 12 January 2018.
|Parliament of Ghana|
| Member of Parliament for Atwima Nwabagya
| Member of Parliament for Atwima Nwabagya
| Minister for Local Government
| President of Ghana
John Atta Mills
| Chairman of the Economic Community of West African States
Denis Sassou Nguesso
| Chairperson of the African Union
|Party political offices|
Albert Adu Boahen
| New Patriotic Party presidential candidate
1996, 2000, 2004
Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo
General elections were held in Ghana on 7 December 2000, with a second round of the presidential election on 28 December. The presidential elections resulted in a victory for John Kufuor of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), whilst the NPP also won the most seats in the parliamentary elections.
The election marked the first transfer of power via the ballot box in the country's history.2003 in Ghana
2003 in Ghana details events of note that happened in Ghana in the year 2003.2004 Ghanaian general election
General elections were held in Ghana on 7 December 2004. The presidential elections resulted in a victory for incumbent John Kufuor of the New Patriotic Party (NPP). The parliamentary elections saw the NPP win 128 of the 230 seats.2007 in Ghana
2007 in Ghana details events of note that happened in Ghana in that year.Adenta Municipal District
The Adenta Municipal is one of the sixteen (16) districts in the Greater Accra Region of Ghana. Its capital is Adenta East. The district is among the new districts and municipalities created in 2008 by the then President, John Kufuor. It was inaugurated on 29 February 2008.
The district is bordered to the north by La Nkwantanang Madina Municipal District, to the east by Kpone Katamanso District and Tema Metropolis District, to the south by Ledzokuku-Krowor Municipal District, and to the west by Accra Metropolis District. The total area of the district is 92.84 square kilometers. According to the 2010 census, the population of the district is 78,215 with 39,366 males and 38,849 females.Afigya-Kwabre District
The Afigya Kwabre District is one of the thirty (30) districts in the Ashanti Region of Ghana. Its capital is Kodie. The district is among the new districts and municipalities created in 2008 by the then President, John Kufuor.Atwima Kwanwoma District
The Atwima Kwanwoma is one of the twenty-seven (27) districts in the Ashanti Region of Ghana. Its capital is Twedie. The district is among the new districts and municipalities created in 2008 by the then President, John Kufuor. Former Head of State General Ignatious Kutu Akyeampong hailed from the district and is buried in his home town of Hwidiem, a town in the district. Afia Kobi Girls Senior High School is located at Trabuom. Renamed after the late Asantehemaa Nana Afia Kobi, the school was formerly called Atwimaman Secondary School. It was opened in 1975.Bosome Freho District
The Bosome Freho District is one of the twenty-seven (27) districts in the Ashanti Region of Ghana. Its capital is Asiwa. The district is among the new districts and municipalities created in 2008 by the then President, John Kufuor.
There is one Senior High School (Bosome Senior High Technical School), a District Magistrate Court at Asiwa, Asiwa Health Centre and a Police Station. There is also a budget hotel, Pakas Lodge with a Restaurant.Human rights in Ghana
Human rights are "rights and freedoms to which all humans are entitled". Proponents of the concept usually assert that everyone is endowed with certain entitlements merely by reason of being human.Ghana is a sovereign country in West Africa. It was a British colony until the 6 March 1957 when it became the first country south of the Sahara to gain independence.Kufuor government
This is a list of the ministers who have served in John Kufuor's New Patriotic Party government during the Fourth Republic of Ghana. This government started on January 7, 2001, the first changeover between civilian governments in Ghana through the ballot box. John Kufuor won the 2004 elections and served his second term of office ending January 2009.National Youth Employment Program
The National Youth Employment Program (NYEP) of Ghana was established in 2006 by the John Kufuor administration. It is an agency under the Ministry of Youth and Sports.New Patriotic Party
The New Patriotic Party (NPP) is a centre-right and liberal conservative party in Ghana. Since the democratization of Ghana in 1992, it has been one of the two dominant parties in Ghana politics; its leading rival being the centre-left National Democratic Congress (NDC). John Kufuor of the NPP was President of Ghana from 2001 to 2009. At the elections held on 7 December 2004, the party won 129 out of 230 seats. The NPP candidate was Kufuor, who was re-elected as President with 52.75% of the vote. The New Patriotic Party symbol is the African elephant and the New Patriotic Party colors are red, white, and blue.
In the 2008 general election, the NPP candidate Nana Akufo-Addo conceded to losing in the closely contested presidential election runoff amidst accusations of vote rigging, with Akufo-Addo receiving 49.77% of the votes, versus 50.23% for John Atta Mills, the NDC candidate. In the 2012 general election, the NPP faced a similar situation from vote results provided by the Electoral Commission of Ghana (EC). Nana Akufo-Addo received 47.74% of the vote, while NDC candidate John Mahama received 50.7% amidst accusations of electoral fraud. Akufo-Addo was chosen as the NPP's candidate for a third time in the 2016 elections and defeated Mahama in the first round (winning 53.83% of the votes).Nzema East Municipal District
The Nzema East Municipal District is a district of Ghana in the Western Region of Ghana. The district is among the new districts and municipalities created in 2008 by the then President, John Kufuor. It was inaugurated on 29 February 2008.Offinso North District
The Offinso North District is one of the twenty-seven (27) districts in the Ashanti Region of Ghana. Its capital is Akomadan. The district is among the new districts and municipalities created in 2008 by the then President, John Kufuor.Osu, Accra
Located about 3 kilometres (1.9 mi) east of the central business district, Osu is a neighborhood in central Accra, Ghana, known for its busy commercial, restaurant and nightlife activity. It is locally known as the "West End" of Accra. Bounded to the south by the Gulf of Guinea, Osu's western boundary is the Independence Avenue. Ring Road separates Osu from the northern district of Labone.
Owing to its establishment as a settlement around the Danish fort of Christiansborg in the 17th century, Osu offers a mix of houses dating from the early 20th century (both low-rise apartment blocks and detached houses) to modern office towers. Ringway Estates, a gated residential community between Gamel Abdul Nasser Avenue and Cantonments Road is located in the western section of Osu.
The main thoroughfare, Cantonments Road (colloquially known as Oxford Street) features large supermarkets and appliance shops, and is renowned for its food joints and lively nightlife. At its southern end is the site of the 17th-century Fort Christiansborg, a former Danish colonial fort, which formerly housed the seat of government, and relocated to The Flagstaff House near the 37 Military Hospital after it was reconstructed by Former President, John Kufuor.Osu Castle
Osu Castle, also known as Fort Christiansborg or simply the Castle, is a castle located in Osu, Accra, Ghana on the coast of the Atlantic Ocean's Gulf of Guinea. The first substantial fort was built by Denmark-Norway in the 1660s, though the castle has changed hands between Denmark-Norway, Portugal, the Akwamu, Britain, and finally post-Independence Ghana, and was rebuilt numerous times. For most of the castle's history, it has been the seat of government in Ghana with some interruptions, the latest when the John Kufuor administration moved the seat of government to Golden Jubilee House after 6 January 2009, which was quickly reversed by the incoming John Atta Mills administration. It also serves as the place where the late president of Ghana John Atta Mills is buried; in a bird sanctuary, overlooking the Atlantic Ocean.Sekyere Afram Plains District
The Sekyere Afram Plains District is one of the twenty-seven (27) districts in the Ashanti Region of Ghana. Its capital is Kumawu. The district is among the new districts and municipalities created in 2008 by the then President, John Kufuor.Sekyere Central District
The Sekyere Central District is one of the twenty-seven (27) districts in the Ashanti Region of Ghana. Its capital is Nsuta. The district is among the new districts and municipalities created in 2008 by the then President, John Kufuor.Theresa Kufuor
Theresa Kufuor (born 25 October 1937) is the wife of John Kufuor, the second President of the Fourth Republic of Ghana, and former First Lady of Ghana. She is a retired nurse and midwife.
|President of the First Republic (1960–1966)|
|Military regime (1966–1969)|
|President of the Second Republic (1969–1972)|
|Military regime (1972–1979)|
|President of the Third Republic (1979–1981)|
|Military regime (1981–1993)|
|President of the Fourth Republic (from 1993)|
|Organisation of African Unity|