Youth of political parties in Central Region pledge to ensure peaceful election
Cape Coast, July 17, GNA – Youth leaders of political parties in the Central Region have pledged their commitment to break the emerging cycle of electoral violence, tension, and apprehension before, during, and after general elections in the country.
Representatives of three political parties – New Patriotic Party(NPP), National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the Progressive People’s Party (PPP) affirmed their readiness to adhere to the counsel to uphold national peace and harmony in the run-up to the December polls.
They made this affirmation at day’s dialogue on « ensuring a violent free Ghana, before, during and after 2020 election in Ghana: The role of the youth, » by the youth and other stakeholders in Cape Coast.
The meeting, organized by the Central Regional office of the National Youth Authority (NYA) brought together key stakeholders including traditional and religious leaders, political parties and selected youth from across the region to discuss ways to prevent violence through vigilantism ahead of this year’s general election.
Mr. Frank Asmah, the NDC representative, appealed to political parties to refrain from campaigning on ethnic and tribal lines as it tended to cause division among the people.
He cautioned fellow political parties to watch their utterances as it was a powerful weapon that could either make or break the fortunes of a nation saying “whatever tactics that we employ as politicians, we should be mindful of the language and the power of words”.
On vigilantism, he appealed to political parties to respect the Vigilantism and Related Offences Act 2019 (Act 999) whilst planning their campaign activities towards election 2020.
The enactment of Act 999, was born out of the realization that vigilantism could no longer be tolerated in the nation’s body politics, adding that “we have come of age in our democratic dispensation, hence the need to reshape our political activities to catch up with the modern trends of politics”.
He noted that if political parties respected the Act, the country would once again advance its democratic credentials with yet another smooth and peaceful election come December 2020.
Mr. Anthony Sackey, the Regional Youth Organiser of the NPP called on stakeholders to undertake constructive engagements to arrive at practicable, pragmatic, and workable solutions on how to break the cycle of violence in recent times and ensure peace.
He appealed to the security forces to be professional and diligent in their work and urged all political party leaders and their supporters to play a leading role in facilitating the conduct of free, fair and peaceful elections.
He said there will be no peace when parties engage in politics of insult, lies, propaganda, and intimidation but there will be peace when all parties respect the electorate and do not take them for granted.
Mr Sackey said peace does not rest in charters and constitutional provisions alone as it lies in the hearts and minds of all citizens, hence it behooves of all to ensure national peace.
“Let me remind all of us that the December 7, election is not a do or die affair, but a contest of ideas and whoever wins is the one we will follow,” he emphasized as he urged all to maintain the peace in the region before, during and after the elections.
Mr Abdul Majid Coffie, the PPP representative urged all political parties to abide by political codes of conduct and peace pacts they have endorsed to ensure peace in the country.
He entreated the youth not to plunge the country into a situation where all the resources invested in the election will go to waste.
Nana Kwesi Egyir II, Nyimfahen of Oguaa Traditional Area entreated the youth and all other stakeholders to be law-abiding and not to indulge in any activity that will cause fear and panic during the upcoming election.
He urged all the political parties to keep their word of upholding and ensuring that peace prevailed in the society for accelerated development.