The National Democratic Congress is a political party in Ghana. It was founded by Jerry Rawlings in late 1992 to allow him to run for president. Jerry Rawlings had been Ghana's head of state since 1981, having taken power in a military coup. In 1990, the Ghanaian government created a National Commission for Democracy to investigate the road to democracy. It presented its report to the government, the Provisional National Defense Council (PNDC), of which Jerry Rawlings was chairman. New political parties were permitted to form after May 1992, the NDC developed out of the PNDC.
In December 1992, Jerry Rawlings and the NDC won presidential elections beating Professor A A Boahen for the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and Hilla Limann for the People's National Convention Party. A boycott of parliamentary elections by opposition parties effectively gave all seats to the NDC and its coalition partners. Rawlings and the NDC won a second term in 1996. In December 1998, Jerry Rawlings became Chairman for Life of the National Democratic Congress. In 1999 several members of the NDC broke away to form the Reform Movement, which joined the opposition.
In 2000 Jerry Rawlings had served the maximum two terms possible as president, and the party put John Evans Atta Mills forward as his successor. In elections in December that year, the opposition party, the New Patriotic Party (NPP), under the leadership of John Agyekum Kufuor, obtained 57% of the vote.
In December 2008, in his third presidential attempt, John Evans Atta Mills won the presidential elections for the NDC (against the NPP's candidate Nana Akufo-Addo). On 24 July 2012, after the death of John Evans Atta Mills, vice president, John Dramani Mahama took power for the NDC.