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Fructifying the peace pact

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo And Former President John Mahamakuklkdmcnvlkz President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and John Dramani Mahama

Fri, 4 Dec 2020 Source: Yussif Ahmed Ibn Yussif

Just like every election year since 2012, today, Friday, December 4, 2020, there will be a peace pact signing. John Dramani Mahama and Nana Addo Dankwa Akuffo Addo, flag bearers of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the New Patriotic Party (NPP) respectively are expected to sign a peace pact today ahead of the 2020 general elections. The elections will take place on Monday, December 7, 2020.

This peace agreement is meant to give an assurance that the two political party leaders will ensure their followers don’t resort to violence before, during, and after the elections.

Since 1992, when Ghana was ushered into democracy, the country has witnessed relatively peaceful elections to date. Relative because though the country has not sunk into severe chaos yet, it has always experienced some level of violence.

Vigilantism has enveloped this country to its core until a serious stance was taken against it, post the Ayawaso West Wuogon by-election violence in 2019. Needless to say that the report of the Emily Shot Commission which investigated that violence is still sitting on the shelf waiting for implementation. Sure, the government rejected some of the recommendations of the commission, what about the rest of it?

My fellow countrymen and women, this peace pact has to mean something to us. The political figure you are willing to die for has on his and your behalf signed an agreement for peaceful elections. Don’t listen to any secret violence-inciting speeches, if any. Do you really want to bet your life on elections?

In 2019, His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akuffo Addo assented to the Vigilantism and Related Offences Act, 2019 (Act 999). This Act bars any form of political vigilantism in Ghana. Offenders will face a jail term of not less than 10 and not more than 15 years. If nothing at all, this should be reason enough to abstain from such groups and electoral violence.

Fellow Ghanaians, all we want is peaceful, free, and fair elections. The Electoral Commission has assured us of free and fair elections. We as voters have a responsibility to be peaceful. Come what may, there will be a winner and a loser. We have a duty to maintain peace at all cost. Nothing is worth more than peace.

Now more than ever, our dear country needs us to be true patriots and not blind political party loyalists.

Columnist: Yussif Ahmed Ibn Yussif
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