Ghana's President John Atta Mills has died unexpectedly, a presidential statement said, and an aide said his death occurred on Tuesday after he took ill on Monday night. He was 68.The president celebrated his 68th birthday Saturday. He was poised to seek re-election later this year.
Atta Mills travelled to the United States in March and met for a meeting with U.S. President Barack Obama at the White House. He also travelled to the U.S. in April as well, as rumours about his health began to circulate in Ghana.
"People are complaining. They're saying that their standard of living has deteriorated these past eight years," he said. "So if Ghana is a model of growth, it's not translating into something people can feel."
Atta Mills even put up posters of himself standing next to a Photoshopped cutout of Obama in an effort to emphasize that the Ghanaian stood for change.
The 2008 election was the third time that Atta Mills had run for president.
He spent much of his career teaching at the University of Ghana. He earned a doctorate from London's School of Oriental and African Studies before becoming a Fulbright scholar at Stanford University in Palo Alto, Calif.