The Ghana Centre for Democratic Development (CDD-Ghana) on Wednesday said the nation has been tagged as a shining model of democracy in Africa.
The accolade was bestowed on Ghana considering the country’s ability to successfully hold elections in the midst of challenges, Mr. Theodore Dzeble, CDD-Ghana Head of Public Affairs told the Ghana News Agency in a telephone interview in Accra.
He said: “Presidential elections in Ghana are always keenly contested with a lot of anxiety and high expectations. For the country to always pull through these elections successfully is highly commendable.”
Mr Dzeble said unlike other places where misunderstanding over election results brought about violence, “aggrieved parties in Ghana have expressed themselves by going through due legal process, which is typical of a true democracy”.
He said it was also satisfying to note that several individuals and organizations, and the media, got involved during election period, to educate the public on the need to be lawful and avoid violent behavior, adding “this certainly had an effect on the public”.
He commended the media, saying “unlike the past elections where certain media outlets, appeared to be politically tuned, the media was very professional and most unbiased with this immediately past presidential election”.
Commenting on how best to strengthen the political stability the country had achieved, Mr. Dzeble advised the media to maintain high standards of objectivity, and pursue the national interest above all.
“Politicians need to appreciate the fact that weather you win or lose an election, the unity of the nation should be maintained. And state resources should benefit everyone, and not just a particular political party”, he said.
He said there was the need to respect the independence of the Judiciary and also empower all other institutions that contributed to the strengthening of democratic governance.
Mr. Dzeble said parliamentarians should also endeavor not to only seek the well-fare of their constituencies, but be equally interested in the well-fare and progress of the country as a whole.
Touching on the filing of an electoral petition at the Supreme Court, against the results of recently held Presidential elections by the leadership of the New Patriotic Party, he said that was highly indicative of a true democracy, which allowed all to express their grievances.
Mr. Dzeble said what counted most, was for people to understand that whatever the case might be, redress could only be sought through legal means, and not by taking the law into their own hands.