Encouraging Peaceful and Credible Elections
On December 7th 2016 Ghana held its Presidential and Parliamentary elections. People gathered at the polls, lining up for hours in the shade of buildings and trees to cast their ballots.
Ghana achieved independence in 1957 and has had free elections in the fourth constitution since 1992. In the past, especially in the Northern, Upper East, and Upper West Regions, elections have been a point of contention and a catalyst for violence. This year many organizations including CALID have been working hard to ensure the violence that has plagued previous elections comes to an end in 2016.
CALID have been working with youth groups in the past months leading up to the election. They attended training workshops on understanding and preventing conflicts and methods of conflict resolution and mitigation. Our goal was to build the capacity of youth as ambassadors of peace in their communities. The youth carried out their action plans, campaigning for peaceful elections, holding peach marches, and educating the general public on the voting process, voter registration, and the need for peace.
In the weeks leading up to the election many of these young people were trained by CALID in collaboration with the EC and Ghana Police Service as accredited election observers. On voting day they
volunteered their time to observe polling station elections and help us ensure peaceful and credible elections.
Whether your candidate won or lost, we should all be proud of a peaceful and fair election. We must congratulate President-Elect Nana Akufo-Addo, but we must also congratulate former President John Mahama on his graceful concession of defeat. In the wake of this election we can all celebrate one victory, which is peace!
We would like to thank all the youth who dedicated their time to fostering peaceful and credible election, and congratulate them on their success and hard work!