EC’s Communication strategy will deepen trust –Lecturer

Dr. Etse Sikanku

A lecture at the School of Information and Communication Studies at the University of Ghana, Dr. Etse Sikanku has applauded the Electoral Commission’s decision to streamline its communication with the introduction of a five-year communication plan.

The EC on Friday launched the commission’s five-year communication strategy, as part of efforts to improve access to information from the EC.

This, according to him will deepen trust among stakeholders in the country’s electoral process thus clamping down on electoral violence.

Speaking on Accra based Class FM, Dr. Sikanku said “One of the functions that the Electoral Commission plays, apart from running elections and referendums, is to raise public awareness on the rules and principles that govern the conduct of elections.

“If elections remain the centre piece around which the democratic experiment revolves, you will expect that the citizen, in order to be able participants of the democratic sphere, would have the information that they need in order to be informed participants of the electoral process.”

He said constant demand of timely information from the EC will be central to the success of the forthcoming elections.

“If this has been realised and they (EC) have taken the decision to consciously and assertively improve their communication apparatus or their communication system, it can only help to go in filling the gap of mistrust,” he said.

Trust, he said is a very important factor in any democracy and that the absence of it is what leads to electoral violence.

“The trust that people have in the electoral system is crucial. [We see] how people react to the outcome of that election and if there is mistrust in the body that is supposed to be the arbiter of this particular process, that is actually the fulcrum that leads to activities that we see – stealing of the ballots, challenging the electoral results, or taking things into their own hands – which we all know could even have more dangerous repercussions.

“So the issue of information and communication is so vital to averting some of these consequence so hopefully any bit of efforts should address some of these issues,” said Dr. Sikanku

Souce: Ghana/ Awal

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