Christian Council report calls for “serious reforms” in Ghana’s electoral system

Voter2The Christian Council of Ghana (CCG) on Thursday launched a report on its observation of events during Election 2012.

The 63-page report, which was compiled by the Council, contains factual information on CCG’s observation of activities during the election process and made recommendations for amendments to the electoral system in order to improve upon the country’s democratic process.

The report calls for serious reforms in Ghana’s electoral system in order to secure the democratic gains that had been achieved over the years.

It cited the tension that generated between the two major political parties- New Patriotic Party and National Democratic Congress which believed that each of them commanded the numbers to win the general election.

According to the report the polarisation of the two political parties aggravated into a war of insults and protracted language with the penchant to win the election at all cost.

It indicated that the misconception and misunderstanding of the introduction of the biometric registration and verification into the Election 2012 among the political parties, intellectuals and the public also complicated the political climate and fuelled mistrust in the electoral system.

Reverend Fred Deegbe, Immediate Past General Secretary of the CCG, in an overview, said the Council had played active roles in ensuring peaceful, free and fairness electoral processes in five successful elections and three successful transfers of political power and governments since the Fourth Republic.

He said the Council in 2012 trained and coordinated the activities of local and some international observers, held several sensitisation workshops, was involved in the production of peace messages and ensured the formalisation of the Eminent Persons Group who played an active role behind the scenes to secure peace for the nation.

He explained that the report contained the Council’s own genuine and comprehensive record of activities observed during the period and would serve as an important resource and reference document for stakeholders in the improvement of future elections.

Rev Deegbe gave reverence to God, and commended all those who worked behind the scenes to ensure the success and peace that prevailed in the country during the period and also for the sustained peace in the post-election period.

According to him the laudable achievements which were aimed at deepening Ghana’s democracy has had its fair share of irregularities, which included rejected ballots, violence, protracted and insulting languages and tension, with the potential to trigger civil unrest.

Rev Deegbe observed that there were certain irregularities in the electoral process, while Ghana’s electoral system is not a perfect one.

He warned that what happened during the election 2012 should not be repeated.

Rev Deegbe said the calmness that prevailed in the post-election period was brokered reactively by some eminent members of the society.

Professor Irene Odotei, a Lecturer at the Institute of Research Advocacy and Training of the University of Ghana who launched the report, urged the youth to secure copies for their libraries to improve their knowledge and understanding of the country’s electoral system and democratic process.

Source: GNA

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