Almost four months into the Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo administration, The European Union Elections Observer Union has officially made known its findings in what has largely been seen by civil society actors as a fair assessment.
According to the Report, Ghana’s elections processes was “efficiently organized, [was] competitive…and that voters participated freely in large numbers and that the processes successfully met a range of international standards.”
As a nascent democracy, however, the Report stated that there were some shortcomings that needed to be addressed by government and the Electoral Commission in going forward.
Beyond that, the Report proffered recommendations, in addressing those shortcomings, which largely had to do with counting and collation of results as well as processes for publication or declaration of results.
For those who had deprecated the processes from day one when the Electoral Commission decided to compile a fresh voters’ register through the rollout of the processes under tight COVID-19 protocols that saw our borders being closed, the propaganda about certain portions of the report citing incumbency may be good news and more tonic for more propaganda.
Looked critically, particularly against the background of COVID-19 pressures and socio-political stress, the Report, in the opinion of The Thunder, largely commends the government.
There are five important areas in which elections in our part of the world gets compromised and those are have to do with the atmosphere incumbent governments generate to intimidate political opponents.
That phenomenon didn’t show up in our case. Voters in the Ashanti Region did not harass voters who are non-indigenous and who belong to the opposition National Democratic Congress.
In the same vein, there were no reports about voters in the Volta Region who do not belong the NDC being molested or intimidated as had been the case since 1992.
Additionally, the levels of tension that are created at polling stations and which compel the intervention of police and other security personnel were largely absent. And that speaks volumes for free, peaceful and fair processes that culminate in peaceful elections.
The processes towards Ghana’s elections including registration and procurement; campaigning and the Electoral Commissions engagement of political parties were held during a period of global fear and panic; which also hampered the peaceful engagements that should have brought about the best in the actors who all belong to the Inter-Party Committee with a mission to engage the EC in conduct and monitoring the processes for elections.
That the government didn’t take advantage of those processes to bloat the figures and diminish participation of the opposition is also a plus for the government.
That is why most observers including our local and West African teams complimented Ghana for showing the way in West Africa and Africa, for that matter, in conducting the elections successfully.
As had been admitted by cadres of the NDC, it was the NDC that had challenges with its collation and reporting systems and not the Electoral Commission or the ruling party.
Any other arguments that anybody may want to use in concluding that the European Union Observer team’s report discredits Ghana’s election will, in our opinion, be dishonest and illiterate.