Ghana’s Electoral Commission Sues For Peace As Voting Begins

The Electoral Commission of Ghana has called for peace during and after Monday’s general election.

“We urge all citizens to abide by the law and conduct themselves in a manner that ensures peace reigns during and after the 2020 General Election. Be an agent of peace while exercising your civic responsibility,” the commision said in a tweet.

The body, which is responsible for all public elections and made up of seven members, further noted that voting will last for 10 hours, begining at 7pm.

It said, “Go to your Polling Station with your Voter ID card if you are a registered voter between 7am and 5pm to cast your vote then leave quietly. You may return to the Polling Station after 5pm to observe the counting of ballots”

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More than 17 million Ghanaians are eligible to vote in the elections where 11 candidates are in the race to unseat President Nana Akufo-Addo, who is running for his second term.

Ghana is considered as one of the most democratic countries in West Africa. Powers have been peacefully transferred on seven occasions since it returned to democracy nearly 30 years ago.

The two major parties – New Patriotic Party and National Democratic Congress – have always accepted electoral outcomes and pursued any grievances through the courts.

To ensure its continued tradition of peaceful polls, incumbent Akufo-Addo, 76, and former president John Mahama, 62, on Friday signed a symbolic peace pact.

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They are among 12 candidates, including three women, who are running.

“In view of the happenings on the continent, and, indeed in West Africa, the entire world is looking up to us to maintain our status as a beacon of democracy, peace and stability,” Akufo-Addo said in a televised address on Sunday evening.

Previous elections had been marred by clashes instigated by vigilantes hired by politicians, but a law passed last year banned vigilantism making it punishable by a 10-year minimum jail term.

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