5 December 2012

Ghana: Voting for Peaceful & Quality Leadership

Photo: Ghana Decides
Voter registration.


Yesterday, The Chronicle warned in its editorial that in spite of the roof-top advertisement of preparing to conduct transparent, free and fair elections in a peaceful and congeal atmosphere, the Electoral Commission has opened the way for a vote that is likely to be cast in confusion. The prognoses are not good for a peaceful vote on Friday.

The Electoral Commission appears not to be properly prepared for the vote. The confusion that marked the special vote for the security services, clearly makes a case for Dr. Kwadwo Afari-Gyan especially, to descend from his Ivory Tower of idealism, when all around him, things are threatening to explode.

Instead of dealing with the problem of a flawed voters' register compiled with inputs from a group of ill-prepared, underpaid and over-exploited amateurs, the Electoral Commission and its Chairman spent most of valuable time chasing the addition of 45 seats to an already congested Parliament House.

Yesterday, confusion made its master's piece when the security services queued to cast their votes. All over the country, there were reports of names missing from the voters register, equipment failing to capture biometric details of potential voters and long delays.

The security services are only a fraction of the general population. If so much confusion enveloped the security and special voters' exercise, then what is the guarantee that tomorrow's vote would be without hitches. The prognoses, as we have been warning, are not good.

Yesterday's vote registered complains about missing names, inadequate biometric details, long queues and unnecessary delays. It is the case with all centres that carried out the polling exercise, which put the Electoral Commission on notice.

It looks like this country is charting the path that produced that hopelessness of a vote that characterized the 2010 District Assembly Elections. We hope and pray that the Electoral Commission would minimize its mistakes so that the outcome of the vote would be accepted by all.

The Electoral Commission aside, the various political parties and their candidates have a role to play to cool down tempers before, during and after the vote. At the end of the day, the vote is only a means of determining who occupies Government House. It is not an end in itself.

The Chronicle would like to take this opportunity to appeal to the various political parties to think of the larger interest of the country and advise their followers to behave.

While we are at it, The Chronicle is wondering where the Chairman of the National Democratic Congress has been of late. It is unusual for the Chairman of the NDC to remain quiet on the eve of this all important election.

Dr. Kwabena Adjei's rhetoric on the ways of killing a cat aside, he has a much cooler head than the likes of Johnson Asiedu-Nketiah and Elvis Afriyie-Ankrah, who are poking the fire in such a volatile atmosphere. This nation needs to remain intact. It is the duty of all of us to ensure that our Mother Land continues to cater for all of us.

The Kumasi Accord binds all the Presidential Candidates, their political parties and supporters to ensure that the vote on Friday produce the quality leadership we all yearn for, in an atmosphere of peace. It is a pledge we should all keep.

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