Politics of Saturday, 1 December 2012
Mr Edward Ampratwum, Senior Research Fellow of the Centre for Democratic Development (CDD)-Ghana, has called on Ghanaians to harness their militancy in the political discourse into innovative ways to resolve societal issues.
Mr Ampratwum made the call when he addressed a debate organised for parliamentary candidates in the EKumfi Constituency at Ekumfi Essarkyir near Mankessim in the Central Region.
The debate convened by CDD-Ghana was the 31st to be held in the country, in partnership with the Coalition of Domestic Election Observers and sponsored by Open Society Initiative for West Africa.
Mr Ampratwum said political discussions and campaign messages paid very little or no attention to issues affecting marginalised groups like women, the youth and people with disabilities.
“Mistrust and suspicion among political opponents, political intolerance and insults, intimidation and harassment continue to bedevil our politics,” he said.
He urged Ghanaians to work to improve the credibility of the nation’s elections by creating an atmosphere of tolerance, mutual respect and peace before during and after elections.
All the four candidates contesting for the seat in the constituency participated in the debate which was centred on the economic and developmental challenges facing Ekumfi, good governance, youth challenges, maternal health, the Disability Law and compliance.
The candidates were Mr Abeiku Crentsil of the National Democratic Congress, Mr Francis Kingsley Ato Cudjoe of the New Patriotic Party, and Mr Francis Attah Paign of the Progressive People’s Party and Mr Anderson Ahmed Karimu of the National Democratic Party.
They pledged to ensure peace, before, during and after the December 7 elections.