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General News of Friday, 19 August 2016


Vote buying threat to democracy – Lecturer

The tendency of politicians to offer the electorate money and other gifts in return for votes is a threat to Ghana’s democracy, a political scientist at the University of Ghana, Dr Bossman Asare, has said.

“One of the problems we have in this country is that politicians look down on the electorate. They think the people are not smart, so when it comes to elections, they decide to do a few things for them. We heard they were sharing outboard motors and all that. All these things are unacceptable. You cannot say you are practising representative democracy and then candidates [wait till elections before fixing problems],” he bemoaned.

Dr Asare, who spoke in an interview with Class News on Thursday August 18, said the practice must cease if Ghana really wants to be regarded as a country with strong democratic systems.

His comment follows the latest survey by the Centre for Democratic Development, CDD, which revealed that the governing National Democratic Congress (NDC) was the worst culprit in terms of vote buying.

The results of the survey showed that 51 per cent of Ghanaians believed that the NDC was engaged in vote buying while 32 per cent felt that the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) also used various ways to coerce people to vote for them.

Generally, the respondents of the survey abhorred vote buying and indicated that it was wrong and punishable to buy or offer votes.

The survey was conducted across the country with a sample size of 2400 respondents between July 2 and July 18.