General News of Sunday, 4 November 2012
The Electoral Commission (EC) on Saturday fixed November 6th as the date to dialogue with Presidential Candidates contesting Election 2012.
The EC and Presidential Candidates dialogue aims at building on the integrity of the electoral process for a peaceful poll in December, Dr Kwadwo Afari-Gyan, EC Chairman, told the Ghana News Agency in an interview.
He said the dialogue was to brief the candidate on preparations towards Election Day, and also to develop a healthy relationship between the EC and the candidates. Dr Afari-Gyan told the GNA that the platform was also to listen to any concern of the political parties and assured the political leadership that Ghana's electoral system had an inbuilt mechanism for free, fair and transparent election.
The EC Chairman reiterated that electoral management was a shared responsibility among all stakeholders, including the political parties, media, electoral administrators and democratic institutions.
He therefore charged all to play their roles effectively to ensure that the credibility of the electoral process was not tarnished.
The platform also seeks to offer the candidates the opportunity to fraternise, share jokes, and dialogue as leaders of the opposition sits on the same table with the ruling presidential candidate and vice presidential candidate.
The Presidential Candidates expected to participate in the dialogue are; President John Dramani Mahama of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), New Patriotic Party’s (NPP) Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, Convention People’s Party’s (CPP) Dr Michael Abu Sakara Foster and Dr Paa Kwesi Nduom of the Progressive Peoples Party (PPP).
The rest are The Peoples National Convention’s (PNC) Mr Hassan Ayariga, United Front Party’s (UFP) Mr Akwasi Adddai Odike, the Great Consolidated Popular Party’s (GCPP) Mr Henry Lartey and an Independent Candidate, Mr Jacob Osei Yeboah.
GNA’s investigation indicates that the EC on October 20th, 2008 held the maiden inter-presidential candidates' dialogue dubbed: "Safeguarding the Integrity of the Ballot".
The maiden dialogue was attended by Presidential Candidates who contested Election 2008; NPP Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo, and his running mate, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia; Democratic Freedom Party (DFP), Mr Emmanuel Ansah-Antwi; Democratic People's Party (DPP), Mr Thomas N. Ward-Brew; and the running mate of the PNC, Ms Petra Maria Amegashie.
Others were; CPP, Dr Paa Kwesi Nduom, and independent presidential candidate, Mr Kwesi Amoafo-Yeboah.
The NDC was represented by the General Secretary, Mr Johnson Asiedu Nketia and National Chairman, Dr Kwabena Adjei while the Reformed Patriotic Democrats was represented by Mr Francis Kyei, General Secretary.
Since 1992, Ghana has had uninterrupted democratic practice, conducting five globally acclaimed successful elections.