Ghana: Political news dominates Ghanaian media

Accra, Ghana (PANA) – Political news dominated Ghana’s media this week as the various parties stepped up their campaigns for the 7 December presidential and parliamentary polls.

The state-owned Graphic in a story with the headline, “Where are the manifestos?”dealt with the pertinent question on the lips of many Ghanaians who are wondering why the political parties have been making promises at their rallies without giving the electorate an idea of what is in their manifestos.

The Graphic said members of the public, governance institutions and political parties had expressed varied views about the delay in unveiling of the manifestos, with just three months to the vote. It quoted several of them as saying that the situation was not the best for the development of the country’s democracy.

However, the Graphic said, some members of the public were divided in their opinions regarding the late unveiling of the manifestos.

Some said they would make informed decisions based on manifestos, others said their minds had already been made up as to who they would vote for, while some were of the view that they would vote for the party that provided convincing oral plans and programmes for the betterment of their lives.

The newspaper said while there was no law that required parties to make their manifestos public within a stipulated period of time before elections, concerns expressed by some people pointed to the fact that their ability to make informed decisions on which party to vote for would be contingent on what they read in the manifestos.

In another story, the Graphic said the camps of the two major political parties —  the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) — had been predicting victory for their respective presidential candidates in the December polls. NDC has won 4 of the six elections in the Fourth Republic which began in 1992.

In the story under the headline, “Who’s ready for 2016 polls? NDC, NPP say they are winning but other parties upbeat” the Graphic said the NDC argues that if Ghanaians want to see the “benefits of the sacrifices, it is President John Dramani Mahama (JDM) for 2016 and no other person or candidate. He also epitomises humility, compassion and judgement against his opponent”.

But the NPP points to the ideas its candidate Nana Addo-Dankwa Akufo-Addo espouses and his dedication to the country, good governance and the rule of law spanning over four decades.

The NDC is urging Ghanaians to ignore Nana Akufo-Addo’s “try me” appeal and not experiment with a new President in 2016.

But the NPP notes that “the experience of the person there now has been a disastrous experience for our country”.

Meanwhile, the Graphic reported during the week that the Electoral Commission (EC) had identified 81 constituencies out of the 275 as possible violence-prone areas before, during and after the 2016 general election.

The Chairperson of the EC, Mrs Charlotte Osei, said the EC had started a project, together with the Ghana Police Service, to map out all the polling stations, especially those in the flash points, to ensure adequate security at all polling centres and the EC’s regional offices.

Speaking at a national colloquium on the security of the upcoming election she charged political leaders to take responsibility for the actions of their supporters to ensure a peaceful and transparent vote on 7 December.

Mrs Osei further announced that policemen would be present during the printing of the ballot papers and also escort them to the polling centres. That, she said, was to ensure that there was adequate security at all polling centres.

She appealed to all relevant institutions, including the media and political parties, to help educate the people on peaceful elections to avoid any conflict before, during and after the elections.

She stressed the need for a strong and independent media to ensure free, fair and transparent elections and called on them to carry out their responsibilities devoid of inflammatory speeches, adding: “The people of Ghana deserve peace."
-0- PANA MA 10Sept2016

10 september 2016 04:27:47




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