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Opinions of Sunday, 16 October 2016

Columnist: Ghanaian Chronicle

NPP, NDC must campaign on issues after manifesto launch

NPP Flag (L) , NDC Flag (R) NPP Flag (L) , NDC Flag (R)

About three weeks ago, members of the governing National Democratic Congress (NDC) converged at the Sunyani Coronation Park to launch their manifesto.

The manifesto launch attracted supporters of the party from all walks of life, including ministers of state, Members of Parliament (MPs), ambassadors, chairmen and members of the various state-owned organisations.

Yesterday, the biggest opposition party, the New Patriotic Party (NPP), also launched its manifesto, pulling a record crowd, to the amazement majority of Ghanaians and other political parties in the country.

The Trade Fair site, located at La in the La-Dadekotopon Municipality of the Greater Accra Region, went agog with shouts of excitement from the overwhelming crowd, which can only be viewed as a sign of better things to come.

In-between the dates the two most glamorous and biggest political countries in the country held their manifesto launch events, other political parties, including Ayariga's All People's Congress (APC), took the opportunity to do theirs.

The Chronicle congratulates all the political parties that have already launched their manifestos, which is an indication of the fact that they are battle-ready for the December 7 presidential and parliamentary elections.

While launching the NDC manifesto, President John Dramani Mahama touted his achievements, stressing on the fact that the life expectancy rate of Ghanaians has seen tremendous improvement under his tenure, saying Ghana is second only to Cape Verde on the African Continent.

He told the excited and expectant NDC crowd that his record, as President of the Republic in the past three and half years, was enough evidence of his capabilities, stressing that the National Health Insurance Scheme, under his tenure, has grown from strength to strength.

The President commended his administration on how far it has brought the country, and also the efforts it has put in place to improve the various sectors of the economy, especially, health and education, emphasising that the economy is on course to bringing inflation down to single digit.

On his part, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, speaking at the launch, outlined his visions for the country, if voted into power.

“My vision for Ghana is of an optimistic, self-confident and prosperous nation with a strong and thriving democratic society, in which mutual trust and economic opportunities exist for all, irrespective of their background,” he said.

According to him, the poor state in which the country finds itself is heartbreaking, stating that Ghanaians deserve better, and that when he is voted in the December election, things would change for the better.

Former President John Agyekum Kufuor said the NPP is ready to take over power and steer governance to the heights of development, as the party once did under his tenure, where it was able to achieve middle-income status for the country; “because it is in our party’s DNA.”

While calling on the two biggest political parties to keep their promises to the people of Ghana, as they have enumerated in their respective manifestos, should they win the election, The Chronicle is urging them to embark on clean campaigns devoid of insults and the casting of slurs on one another.

The paper believes that the best way to see clean, free and fair elections in December is for the various political parties to campaign on issues, telling Ghanaians what they can do, as they have already spelt out in their manifestos, given the opportunity.

Fighting among supporters of the various political parties, leading to chaos, confusion, vandalising of state and private properties, as well as injuries and deaths, come as a result of politics of insults.

The Chronicle is, therefore, calling on the two political parties to stay away from such acts, because all Ghanaians want to see is a peaceful election, so that they come go back to their day-to-day activities, and not for anybody to ignite the flame of disorderliness.

They should not incite their supporters to steal ballot boxes or engage in election violence, all in their quest to win political power, whether by fair or foul means.