Customs and traditions
Characteristics that are high in the course
of Ghanaian society are hospitality, openness and
courtesy. The lifestyle is often relaxed. Respect for
the elderly is great.
Relatives and friends often visit each other without
warning. People are not usually punctual when it comes
to meetings. However, it should be remembered that this
is often due to poor transport and communication.
Greeting phrases alternate between different ethnic
groups, but English is common. When greeting, you take
your hand and ask how the other person and his/ her
family are feeling. Visitors greet all the family
members of the house.
Overview of the capital city of Ghana, including information about its population, economy, geography, history and map.
Ghanaians want visitors to feel at home. Most
discussion topics are accepted, but as a foreigner you
should avoid getting into political discussions, at
least at the first meetings.
Courtesy and respect
A younger person addresses an older person as a
father or mother and must show due respect. It is common
for friends of the same sex to hold hands when they walk
or talk, it signals nothing more than friendship.
Polite behavior is important. If you yawn or use a
toothpick, for example, you have to hold your mouth. It
is rude to use your left hand when receiving or giving
something, or when waving. Staring or pointing at
someone in front of others is also inappropriate.
Since in Ghana you usually eat with your right hand,
you wash your hands in a bowl of water, which goes
around among guests before the meal. Even after the
food, water is sent around to wash your hands.
Food and clothing
Jams, corn and beans are the staple food throughout
the country. In the south, cassava and seedlings are
common, and in the north millet and sorghum are grown.
Imported crops such as rice and wheat have become
increasingly common. Ghanaian food is often spicy. Stews
with fish, meat or chicken are common. Fufu is
a common porridge-like dish consisting of leafy and
cassava. It is shaped with the right hand into a ball,
which with a touch of the thumb is made spoon-like and
used to grind up stew or soup. For fufu you like to eat
peanut soup. Egusi is a popular spicy soup
consisting of palm oil and melon seeds, ground into a
paste. Egusi is very nutritious and can be cooked with
or without vegetables, fish or meat. The diet is varied
with tropical fruits, of which there is abundant supply.
Casual clothing is most common, although suit and tie
are required on more formal occasions. Shorts are not
acceptable in public settings. Western clothing is most
common in the cities, but you can also see mantles woven
from traditional kente fabric. Women often wear
a long skirt with top and head scarf. This dress can be
In addition to the major Christian and Muslim
holidays, New Year's Day, Independence Day (March 6),
Republic Day (July 1), Father's Day (September 21; Kwame
Nkrumah's Birthday, 1909) and Revolution Day (December
31; Jerry Rawling's 1981 coup) are celebrated.
The election leads to a shift in power
Opposition Party NPP leader Nana Akufo-Addo wins the presidential election
with close to 54 percent of the vote against just over 44 percent for NDC
President Mahama. Despite some unrest during the election movement, the election
itself is conducted under calm conditions. Mahama admits being defeated without
a whip when the Election Commission announces the result.
A death in election-related violence
One person is killed and six seriously injured when fighting erupts between
supporters of the two major parties NPP and NDC in connection with a political
meeting in northeastern Ghana.
The opposition promises lower taxes
The opposition party NPP's presidential candidate Akufo-Addo intensifies the
electoral movement by harshly accusing the NDC government of financial neglect
and friendship corruption . Akufo-Addo says the government has failed to solve
the severe problems with electricity shortages and power outages as well as
bring down high unemployment. Akufo-Addo promises to create high economic growth
through reduced taxes and a better budget process.
President Mahama is criticized for the gift
A Ghanaian commission criticizes President Mahama for breaking the state's
gift rules when he received a car from a company that was later awarded a
contract on a road construction. However, the Commission notes that Mahama was
not guilty of bribery.
The economy's most important election issue
President Mahama promises economic growth and new jobs if he wins the
December presidential election. However, his scope for maneuver is limited, in
fact, because the IMF, which recently granted Ghana a large loan, demands
stringent government finances and economic reforms as loan terms. Opposition
leader Nana Akufo-Addo criticizes the government's way of dealing with the
Radio talkers are imprisoned
The Supreme Court sentenced a well-known radio reporter and his two
co-workers to each of four months in prison and fined for threatening to kill
judges who made the decision to remove 56,000 names from the ballot boxes in the
December elections. The opposition has complained that these voters have been
registered after identifying themselves with health insurance cards, which does
not guarantee that they are Ghanaian citizens. The three radio talkers
sympathize with the government.
Elections in December
The Election Commission decides that presidential and parliamentary elections
should be held on December 7, after Parliament voted down a proposal to
permanently conduct the elections a month earlier. Those who advocated a
previous election wanted to give more time to discuss any protests and to make
any second round of presidential elections before the head of state takes
The Minister of Energy is leaving
Energy Minister Kwabena Donkor resigns after he failed to solve the severe
energy crisis with electricity shortages and constant power cuts.