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Politics of Thursday, 20 December 2012

Source: GNA

NPP protest against Election 2012, mockery of peace accord

The dispute of results of 2012 presidential polls by the New Patriotic Party (NPP) is a mockery of the peace declaration agreement, signed by leaders of political parties that contested the elections, in Kumasi, just before the polls.

Mrs Lucy Awuni, Deputy Minister for the Upper East, who made the observation, expressed worry that despite the peace initiative, the NPP leadership allowed its followers to mass up at public places to protest against the conduct of the election.

She said this gives other countries and the foreign media a disturbing impression that there is uneasy calm in Ghana, and that the country’s highly regarded institutions like the Electoral Commission and the security agencies, are shoddy in duty and shady in character.

Mrs Awuni, in a statement she signed copied to the Ghana News Agency in Bolgatanga on Thursday, said: “Worse, the protest has assumed a level where representatives of some media houses (Metro TV, Joy FM, TV3, et cetera) unjustifiably have been brutalized, and their vehicles and equipment smashed by those agitators”.

Creating an atmosphere of panic and cold-blooded raid by those dissenters is regrettably in sharp contrast to the famous tolerant, patient and hospitable nature of Ghanaians”.

She cautioned all National Democratic Congress (NDC) supporters against reprisal attacks, and asked them to remain calm and to report any threat to the appropriate quarters.

Mrs Awuni appealed to the NPP agitators to remember that they have: ‘’only one Ghana and any damage intended against the image of the country,” would equally affect them.

She commended Ghanaians, who put the nation above their various political shades and worked hard to maintain the country’s enviable democratic stature.

Mrs Awuni said: “The December Election shifted the global spotlight on Ghana amid pre-election tension and anxiety; but, thankfully, we, as Africa’s torchbearer in democratic governance, did not let the continent down”.

She congratulated NDC supporters and sympathisers on the party’s sweet victory in Election 2012, and said it could be attributed to their prayers, commitment and vigilance throughout the short campaign season and on the voting day.

Mrs Awuni said:” I also thank all citizens of Ghana who may not belong to the NDC but chose to vote for our presidential candidate (now President-Elect) John Mahama and our parliamentary candidates throughout the region. My congratulatory message extends to all traditional authorities, religious leaders, security agencies, civil society organisations and individuals, who contributed their quota to ensure an election that some develop countries, the United Nations, foreign envoys and election observers and world-acclaimed election monitoring groups have described as credible and a benchmark for other countries in Africa and beyond.”

She appealed to the National Commission for Civic Education, the Electoral Commission, and party leadership at all levels to intensify their voter education exercises ahead of the next election, to avoid mishaps, and regretted that despite the public education and investment that went into educating the electorate on proper voting, many ballot papers were rejected.

Mrs. Awuni recounted that this year’s polls in the Upper East Region recorded 19,611 rejected votes out of 432,048 votes cast in the presidential balloting, and in the parliamentary election, 13, 093 votes were rejected out of the 433,064 votes cast.