Ghana to vote in presidential run-off

Ghana to vote in presidential run-offNairobi/Accra  - Ghana goes to the polls Sunday in a run-off presidential election that will decide who leads the West African nation into an era of oil production.

Neither Nana Akufo-Addo of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) nor John Atta Mills of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) were able to score a decisive victory in the first round in early December.

Akufo-Addo scooped marginally more votes than Atta Mills, but the other six candidates polled enough to prevent him from crossing the 50 per cent mark.

US begins official process of naming Obama president

US begins official process of naming Obama president Washington  - While he may have been elected by US voters back in November, the process of formally naming president-elect Barack Obama to the post only began Monday.

State representatives from around the country gathered to cast their ballots under the country's complex Electoral College system.

Some 538 electoral votes are divided among the 50 US states according to their population size. Each presidential candidate is awarded a portion of those votes based on the results of the November 4 election.

Bangladesh parties welcome decision to end emergency rule

Dhaka - The Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) and its right-wing allies welcomed the decision by the military-backed government to lift the state of emergency on December 17 ahead of the upcoming general elections, media reports said Thursday.

"We hope now the people will participate in the upcoming election in a joyful mood," Khandaker Delwar Hossain, the party's secretary-general, told a private television channel after a lengthy meeting of the leaders of the four-party movement led by former prime minister Khaleda Zia.

A panel of advisers to the interim administration announced late Wednesday the state of emergency would be lifted from December 17.

EU praise Ghana elections as ruling party candidate maintains lead

Nairobi/Accra  - The European Union's election monitoring team Tuesday said that Ghana's elections were open, transparent and competitive as the ruling party's candidate maintained a slim lead while vote counting continued.

"While the process is still ongoing, the 2008 elections have so far helped to strengthen the democratic institutions of Ghana, and Ghana's democratic credentials in the region, Africa and the world at large," EU Chief Observer Nickolay Mladenov said in a statement.

Some were worried that Sunday's simultaneous presidential and parliamentary elections could spark the kind of violence witnessed in Kenya, Zimbabwe and Nigeria earlier this year. But with a large chunk of the votes counted, the fears seem unfounded.

People voted for development: Sheila Dikhsit

Sheila DikhsitWith the Congress appearing set to make a hat-trick in the Delhi assembly elections, Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit on Monday said the people of the national capital voted for the party's development agenda.

"I congratulate the people of Delhi and many many thanks to them for their support and affection for the Congress," the 77-year-old leader said.

"We went to the polls on the development ground with honesty and unity, and people have voted for that," Dikshit said.

Delhi poll results shocking: Rajnath

Delhi poll results shocking: RajnathThe Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) national President Rajnath Singh described the Delhi poll results as "quite unexpected" and "shcoking" on Monday.

In Delhi the results were quite unexpected and shocking," Rajnath Singh told at the BJP headquarters. He said the BJP also considered the loss of Rajasthan "unexpected".

He said the BJP wins in Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, which it has ruled since 2003, "were as expected".