The Upper West Regional Executives of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the New Patriotic Party (NPP) have been blamed for boycotting the 11th Annual Constitution Week Celebration in Wa even though they were invited.
Mr. Ben Banye, Upper West Regional Director of the National Commission on Civic Education (NCCE) said the Commission invited the leadership of all the political parties in the region for the forum but conspicuously missing were the two major political parties.
He said the political turmoil in the country had been between supporters of the NDC and NPP and expressed his disappointment at the refusal of the two parties to attend the round table discussion that seeks to educate participants on the need to tolerate each other’s views.
Mr. Banye was addressing a round table discussion to mark the 11th Annual Constitution Week Celebration at Wa with the theme: “The State of Democracy in Ghana 2011.”
He said the region decided to focus on the “Political Parties” as a sub-theme because political education was lacking in almost all the political parties in the region and described the refusal of the executives of the parties ‘as most unfortunate.’
He, therefore, advised them to change their attitude and partner the Commission so that together they could educate members of the public on the need to be tolerant of one another.
Naa Seidu Braimah, a Member of Council of State, who also expressed dissatisfaction about the absence of parties lauded the Convention People’s Party (CPP) and the People National Convention (PNC) for their participation saying political parties have over the years played an important role in deepening the country’s democratic governance but there was still more to be done.
Naa Braimah, who is also the chief of Guli, called on political parties to develop effective sanctions for members whose conduct posed a threat to the country’s young democracy.
He said political parties had helped in shaping the political will of the people but pointed out that the lack of civility and decorum in some pronouncements by key party functionaries on issues regarding chieftaincy, religion, ethnicity and the judiciary could reverse the clock of success chalked since 1992.
He urged the NCCE not to relent in its efforts in designing training programmes for political parties, saying it was the only way people could be educated on how to conduct their campaigns without casting insults against their opponents.
Mrs. Augustina Akumanyi, NCCE Deputy National Chairperson, said the Commission decided to focus this year’s constitution celebration on the media, political parties and the judiciary, among others, because of the key role they played in deepening democracy in the country.