1960 Ghanaian presidential election

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Ghanaian presidential election, 1960

27 April 1960 1979 →
  Kwame Nkrumah (JFKWHP-AR6409-A).jpg Noimage.png
Nominee Kwame Nkrumah J. B. Danquah
Party CPP United Party
Popular vote 1,016,076 124,623
Percentage 89.1 10.9%

Elected President

Kwame Nkrumah

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Presidential elections were held for the first time in Ghana on 27 April 1960. The elections were held alongside a referendum on creating an executive presidency. The winner of the election would become the country's first President if the new republican constitution was passed (which it did).


There were only two candidates in the election:


Candidate Party Votes %
Kwame Nkrumah Convention People's Party 1,016,076 89.07
J. B. Danquah United Party 124,623 10.93
Total 1,140,699 100
Registered voters/turnout 2,098,651
Source: African Elections database


After winning the election, and the passing of the new constitution in the simultaneous referendum, Nkrumah was inaugurated on 1 July 1960, replacing Governor-General William Hare as head of state. Danquah was imprisoned the following year under the Preventive Detention Act, but only held for a year. On his release, he was elected President of the Ghana Bar Association. He was imprisoned again in 1964 and died in jail.

Four years later, another referendum strengthened Nkrumah's powers and turned the country into a one-party state (with an official result of 99.91% in support).