With the Limited Registration now under way, the preparations towards Ghana’s November 7 General Election have started in earnest.
Under the 4th Republican Democratic dispensation, Ghana has emerged as a reference, a good example with an admirable track record as an African Democratic State.
The peace and stability Ghana has been enjoying over the past two decades has sustained inclusive growth and enabled a reduction of poverty rates by more than half.
Whereas Ghana’s transition into the 4th Republic was smooth, building on that smooth transition and developing a political culture underpinned by democratic values has been challenging.
The narrative and the bitterness of political victimization in which some former government appointees were apprehended and incarcerated still linger deep.
The political polarization has deepened. Even worse is the mind-set that sinister maneuvering outside the ballot box can win an election. All these have increased political violence, intolerance, disrespect and denigration even of the leaders.
The country cannot continue on this path. It is time to construct a new narrative. This is the time to look forward to the November election with a new sense of reconciliation for the collective good.
Those who insist on the use of political violence and insults cannot have their way if the overwhelming numbers of Ghanaians refuse to take the path of violence and speak up against violence.
The dividends of Ghana's democracy have been remarkable. It is for this reason that all citizens must hold themselves accountable to ending the mistrust towards the institutions with the responsibility for conducting the election.
All Ghanaians must be collectively responsible in ensuring that they contribute to yet another credible and peaceful election. They owe it to themselves and not to anybody to ensure that the November election is conducted peacefully.
Across the world, the international community and Ghana's International Partners are expectant of another high standard and exemplary general election.
A credible and peaceful election in November will bring along with it, renewed momentum to confront the country's remaining development challenges for all to benefit.
This is the time to demonstrate the values of tolerance and unity while celebrating Ghana's diversity. It is time to overcome the bitterness of the past and conduct a politics of mutual respect, decorum and above all, a politics that is devoid of ethnic exclusion, vicious insults and denigration.
God bless our homeland Ghana and make our nation great and strong.
BY: EMMANUEL BOMBANDE, A PEACE-BUILDING PRACTITIONER.