Thursday, January 1, 2009

“Don’t undermine democratic culture”-President Musa Yar’Adua.

Nigerian President Musa Yar'Adua has advised Ghanaians not to undermine the democratic culture which has been nurtured so far in the country.

He said post-election events in Ghana would be the test of the country's democratic experience, noting that any disagreement among the political players should not be at the expense of the ordinary people.

The Security Adviser to the Nigerian leader, General Abdulahi Sarki Mukthar, who conveyed President Yar'Adua's message to President Kuffour at the Golden Jubilee house in Accra yesterday, said the interest of the Nigerian leader in the political dynamics in Ghana was premised on the fact that events in the country could have serious repercussions in the entire West African sub-region and the rest of Africa.

General Mukthar said President Yar'Adua, the current Chairman of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), was interested in the unfolding political development and dynamics of the electoral process in Ghana.

The Security Adviser was accompanied by Dr. Mohammed Ibn Chambas, the President of the ECOWAS Commission, and officials of the Nigerian Foreign Ministry.

He said it was the view of the Nigerian leader that in any contest there would certainly be a winner and a loser, saying that whoever won should show modesty, humility and leadership, while the loser who felt aggrieved should use the appropriate means to seek redress.

He said he had been sent by the Nigerian leader to hold discussions with President Kufuor on post-election events which would be the real test of Ghana's democratic experience.

General Mukthar said what was needed at the moment was understanding and tolerance among political players and their followers.

Receiving the special envoy, President Kufour  acknowledged the tension in the country as people waited for the Electoral Commission(EC), the constitutionally mandated body, to declare the results of the Sunday's run-off.

He said it was in the direct and immediate interest of the nation for the nation for stakeholders in the electoral process to use the law to settle any grievances relating to the election.

President Kufuor said once the declaration of the results had been made by the EC, he would use his high office to ensure its implementation, pledging to be fair and even-handed in the implementation of the declaration. 

Meanwhile, in a press release issued from the office of the President in Accra yesterday, President Kufuor appreciated the passion with which the entire nation was awaiting the outcome of the election but appealed to Ghanaians, especially supporters of the NPP and the NDC, to remain calm and wait patiently for the declaration of the results by the EC, which alone had the constitutional mandate to undertake the function.

It stated that total co-operation in that respect would ensure that peace and security of the nation were not undermined. 

In another development, the National Security Council Secretariat has assured Ghanaians, foreigners and the international community that the government does not intend to declare a State of Emergency, as is being rumored by the originators of that false information.

Rather, the secretariat contended that it was the aim of those people peddling that falsehood to create panic, anxiety and apprehension among the citizenry.

A press release signed and issued by Dr. Sam Amoo, the National Security Co-coordinator, in Accra yesterday assured the nation that the government would not shirk its responsibilities but would continue to protect lives and property during the period.

According to the release, the attention of the secretariat had been drawn to the activities of individuals and groups who were spreading false information that the government intended to declare a State of Emergency.


 Source:  Daily Graphic.

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